Stowaway Movie Review & Summary: A Beautiful Secluded Space Drama

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Video Source – Netflix (Netflix YouTube Channel)

Stowaway is a Space psychological thriller directed by Joe Penna. It stars Anna Kendrick in the lead, and packs some really spectacular performances. 

Stowaway Movie Plot

Stowaway is a movie based about 3 Astronauts on their way to Mars, who are surprised by a 4th passenger amidst them. This creates a strain on resources which can only be resolved one way. 

Stowaway Movie Review

What could a secluded space drama possibly have which is more entertaining and engaging than an exciting space creature adventure? The answer to that is a soul. For real, Stowaway had a deep, realized soul which never left me, and I am not sure if it was due to the mesmerizing visuals or the engaging performances by the cast. Maybe both. It flows ever so slowly that the entirety of the movie falls dependent on the actors to do beyond justice to their roles. The cast of four people led by Anna Kendrick is absolutely fantastic in making the most of this otherwise overly long space drama.

The visual rendition, and the colors that burst out of scenes from time to time have an outcast, mystical sense to them. All of this is not to say that the film was perfect by every means. The ending in particular felt repetitive, which I think was the goal but it did seem to lack innovation. Yet, I am willing to forego of these minor hiccups as they hardly hampered my viewing experience.

Stowaway is a space psychological drama of sorts where 3 Astronauts are faced with an increasingly tough decision to make. They discover the presence of a fourth passenger in their shuttle which was already stretched out to accommodate three people. To top that, the oxygen supply of the shuttle was cut off because the 4th passenger hampered the entirety of it. The team, led by Toni Collette’s Marina, now has to make a difficult choice. The oxygen supply being sufficient for just the three people present on the ship, they have to get around letting the fourth, accidental, passenger go. And by go, you know what I mean. 

In a still from the Netflix film Stowaway

Stowaway Movie: A Deeply Personal Story

This premise alone really surprised me due to its ability of establishing a psychological thriller in the middle of nowhere. It starts off slow, really slow in fact, and we gradually uncover the mystery of falling blood from the panel, how a fourth passenger ended up on the ship and how should they maneuver this demanding situation.

The circumstances of the engineer ending inside the ship are just never explored. I assume the writers must have been like, this is a bizarre incident on which the entire structure of the movie depends, rather than giving out an even bizarre reason for a complete stranger in an space shuttle, lets just completely avoid giving one. And well, that’s what they ultimately did in Stowaway. Stowaway by definition means a passenger who has landed himself somewhere he / she shouldn’t be. And this movie is only ever concerned about the aftermath of something like that, which I can respect as knowing the actual cause might have made the entire incident even more fictional. 

Stowaway Movie: Engaging Due to its Performances

The performances by all the cast members are what keep the movie burning. Its filled with a moral code, and an overwhelming amount of empathy, which is why the film never goes towards the route of actually creating a villain out of the situation. There are solely the characters who are trying to get over the situation in their own way. Some ways being more radical than the others. There’s a very clear demarcation of characteristics from the get go with Anna playing the more soft and compassionate passenger while Daniel’s character being more concerned with survival. Toni is the clear minded leader who is ultimately faced with the most unforgiving decisions to make and Shamier’s character is just a clueless passenger who now finds himself on a voyage to Mars. The imagery and the breathtaking score of this movie felt enchanting in a way. Especially the last 15 minutes of the movie, no matter their repetitiveness, were instilled with some beautiful shots and a score which as if transported me to the actual setting. 

Stowaway isn’t perfect and my major flaw with it has to be the lack of innovation in the final act of the movie. It goes back and forth too many times for me to actually care about the ultimate outcome of the movie. After a while, I just tried to indulge myself in the beauty of the Solar Storm, with neon green fragments passing through the dark space. It was pretty easy for me to do that and the ending really penetrate the emo side of my heart. There is no dialogue for the last 10-15 minutes of the film. Everything is conveyed through sheer visualization and score which really struck a chord with me. Its certainly not a movie for everyone and I am sure many people won’t enjoy this film as much as I did (It’s pretty evident on the IMDB), but I will go on with my opinion that this film is the prime example of utilizing a seemingly dull premise and turning it into something much more heartfelt. 

Stowaway Movie Critical Reception

Stowaway has a rating of 75% on Rotten Tomatoes with the consensus being, “Pacing problems prevent Stowaway from fully engaging, but it’s distinguished by its thoughtful, well-acted approach to a story built on an excruciating moral dilemma.” Its Metascore is 63.

The Movie Culture Synopsis

Stowaway is mesmerizing and deeply personal. Its more about choices then an exciting space adventure which I can totally dig and at the end, it just signifies the thorough goodness in humans and how the most basic instincts aren’t often villainous. Stowaway is available on Netflix to watch.

Author

  • Hardik is a Mumbai based writer who is a cinephile. Nothing interests him more than movies and visual entertainment. His other hobbies include reading and singing (At least, he likes to think that he sings well). You can connect with him on his Instagram.