Noob Reviews: Stowaway
Please be advised that during the review, I have tried to avoid a lot of spoilers. However, there may still be a few included helping explain specific points.
What is Stowaway?
Released in April this year, Stowaway is a Netflix original film written by Joe Penna and Ryan Morrison that sees a two-year mission to Mars thrown into disarray.
Not long after the MTS-42 leaves Earth’s orbit, the unconscious remains of a launch support engineer (Michael) are found hidden behind an internal panel by the three original crew members. Unfortunately, not only is Michael a surprise to the crew but whoever placed him there had done so in such a way they have irreparably damaged a pivotal component to the ship’s air processing equipment.
With limited supplies, an ever depleting oxygen supply and no way to return home - it is a race against time for the four crew members to find a way to survive long enough to make planetfall on Mars.
What type of genre is the film?
Stowaway is a solid drama film at its core, with sci-fi elements and a little thriller sprinkled into the mix.
What age rating is Stowaway?
Stowaway has an age rating of 12.
How long is Stowaway?
Stowaway has a runtime of just under two hours, coming in at one hundred and seventeen minutes.
Do you have a trailer to show us?
- The official trailer linked from Netflix’s YouTube channel -
Alternatively, you can also find Stowaway on Netflix here.
Who are some of the actors and actresses that we might know?
Anna Kendrick (Zoe Levenson)
Daniel Dae Kim (David Kim)
Shamier Anderson (Michael Adams)
Toni Collette (Marina Barnett)
For a complete cast listing, please see the official IMDB page here.
What did you think about Stowaway?
When first watching the trailer for Stowaway, I was intrigued by what I saw and was cautiously excited to see if the trailer was another case of containing all the best parts of the film or if the film would blow the trailer away. Unfortunately, it was neither.
Stowaway had the chance to be a unique film that stood out from similar titles in the same genre(s), with a wealth of possibilities and outcomes, but decided instead to stick to the most generic disaster film plots. Throughout the story, although the characters are varied and unique with their approaches and personalities, there is little else that makes this film stand out. And it was pretty obviously pulling a lot of noticeable influence (and sometimes near-identical moments) from films like Apollo 13, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Armaggedon and Pandorum.
When it came to the acting, I thought that the inclusion of Anna Kendrick would be either hit or miss, but I honestly believe she was a solid hit. Working as the ship’s medical officer, she has a bright and bubbly outgoing personality that always brings positivity and hope to conversations and dire situations. I also thought that Daniel Dae Kim, as the ship’s biologist, did a great job as the analytical and cold hard facts member of the team. But unfortunately, I thought Shamier Anderson really overplayed Michael’s role to the point his voice lines and reactions become predictable and his character dull. Similarly, the role of the ship’s captain, played by Toni Collette, was equally generic and had no real energy or unique aspects to her. Even considering the situation all four people are in, she is a highly negative crew member with very little constructive input. And I found many parts of her delivery left wanting.
Although having never been on a space station myself before. The closest I have ever been being in VR or at Epcot in Florida. The design of the space station and the way the spacewalk shots were filmed was fascinating, and the cinematography really did bring a sense of awe to the scenes and really helped build the atmosphere. Speaking of which, the ending to the film, which I will not spoil for you - really was great. Unfortunately, that level of tension and suspense was not more regularly displayed through other parts of the film, where it could have benefited. As opposed to been subjected to more cheesy alternatives that at times quite literally had me rolling my eyes.
All in all, Stowaway is an average watch that kills a few hours. Still, in the end, it is not really something I can really highly praise purely based on the lack of originality and the fact that half of the cast had a rather mediocre screen presence that made a minimal meaningful contribution to events.
What rating would you give Stowaway?
I would rate Stowaway as a solid 3 out of 5 bananas.
As mentioned above, there are some interesting characters in Stowaway, and admittedly, there are moments that may have you gripping the edge of your seat waiting for events to unfold to see how they play out, but overall the rating speaks for itself. Average story, average acting from half of the cast and nothing really original to raise it above similar entries. Definitely watchable and enjoyable, but don’t go in expecting the next groundbreaking sci-fi film.
Thank you very much for checking out the review. If you are interested in Army of the Dead and would like to check it out yourself, to form your own opinion, you can find it on Netflix here.