Linda Cook review: ‘Voyagers’ is less-than-stellar sci-fi

Local News

It’s as though someone cobbled together all the tropes of a YA (young adult) movie and launched them into space.

The lackluster “Voyagers” has a cool premise, to be sure. A spaceship has been dispatched from Earth, which is dying, to colonize a planet that apparently can sustain people.

Because the journey will take more than 80 years, it’s a multi-generational project. So it’s not the people aboard the spaceship, but rather their progeny, who will complete the mission.  

And there is one adult in charge. Just. One. Adult.

The hapless task of managing the young crew falls to the only adult, Richard (Colin Farrell) aboard. They kids aboard are really cute and clever when they’re little, of course, but we know right away things aren’t going to work out well and that mutiny is a distinct possibility.

That is especially true when the kids discover they are being given drugs for impulse and hormone control.

Among the faces of the crew who might be familiar are Tye Sheridan (“Ready Player One,”) Fionn Whitehead (“Dunkirk”) and Lily-Rose Depp (“Yoga Hosers.”)

Really, this is a science-fiction version of “Lord of the Flies,” except it’s not nearly as interesting. The characters are far from fascinating, and seem to have been put in place to keep the action moving along.

You’ll figure out right away who the “bad guy” is, what’s going to pit him against the protagonist and how many of the conflicts begin and end. It’s a paint-by-numbers YA flick that is intriguing only with its initial concept and some of the interiors – a cafeteria, for example – that are far more noteworthy than the characters.

This is sub-par entertainment. You’re better off shuttling this for something more big-screen-worthy.

1 ½ stars

Rated: PG-13 for foul language, violence and sexual situations.

Running time: 108 minutes.

At Cinemark, Davenport, and Palms 10, Muscatine.

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