• Gareth Bradwick

Stowaway ★★★

Joe Penna

Starring Anna Kendrick, Daniel Dae Kim, Shamier Anderson, Toni Collette

Nearly everywhere you look with this new sci-fi movie you will find comparisons to the modern classic, Gravity. From the eery stillness to the surprising cast, Stowaway stands on the shoulders of a giant with the seeming aim of bringing further humanity to a life in space. Three astronauts, along with the entire space station on Earth, somehow miss the fact that there’s an extra person on board at take off in the worst version of ‘getting stuck in the shop after they’ve locked up’ you can ever imagine. This jeopardises the two year mission they had just embarked on and a race against the clock ensues.

The story itself is simple enough and although the drama sags slightly in the middle third, there is something to be said about a simple and slow paced drama. There are also plot holes galore if you think too much about it, but everything can be solved by saying “it’s ok, it’s sci-fi”, right?

There seems to be less budget available here to focus on large CGI set-pieces and so the Director, Joe Penna has decided to pair things back to focus on the crew themselves; doing away with any external characters. This is a wise move and adds to the claustrophobia without adding to the cost.

The cast do as good a job as they can with the material, with far too little Toni Collette (Marina) considering there are only four characters on show. Having Anna Kendrick on board as Zoe is interesting and she does a good job generally; however there is still something of her iconic role in Pitch Perfect in there somewhere and a Kendrick monologue towards the end simply brings back memories of the cup song all over again. A few more of these performances though and she will surely change in to an award winner of the future.

On the whole this is an enjoyable but flawed drama. You won’t get anything overly new in the space/sci-fi genre with this but it has its moments throughout.


Stowaway available now on Netflix

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