Let this headline sink in. Here, let’s repeat it: “Passengers” is now an Oscar-nominated movie.
Yes, the silly, rape-y, misogynistic sci-fi hooey is a contender for Hollywood’s biggest awards. Twice! The film netted nods for Thomas Newman’s score and Guy Hendrix Dyas’ production design. It’s Newman’s 14th nomination and Hendrix Dyas’ second.
Deservedly eviscerated in reviews, “Passengers” is a star vehicle for Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence that Sony hoped would become a Christmas blockbuster. The box-office receipts weren’t as healthy as the studio probably hoped, relying on foreign sales to recoup its reported $110 million budget. No matter: The movie found fortune with Academy voters, surprising pundits, most of whom had not expected it to make the Oscar roster at all.
Abel Korzeniowski (”Nocturnal Animals”), John Williams (”The BFG”), Michael Giacchino (”Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”) and Hans Zimmer (”Hidden Figures”) were among the favored candidates for Best Original Score, according to predictions on the awards handicapping bible Gold Derby. For Best Production Design, Jean Rabasse (”Jackie”), Dante Ferretti (”Silence”), Doug Chiang and Neil Lamont (”Rogue One: A Star Wars Story”) and Seong-hie Ryu (”The Handmaiden”) seemed likelier.
“Passengers” boasts 31 percent positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes, making it one of the year’s least-liked nominees, critically speaking.