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Starring: Anna Kendrick, Daniel Dae Kim, Shamier Anderson, Toni Collette
OUR RATING: ★★★☆☆
Netflix’s sci-fi thriller co-written and directed by Joe Penna. Stowaway (2021) follows a three-man crew as they embark on a space mission to Mars. However, things don’t go as smoothly as they prepared for when they discover a stranger, Michael (Shamier Anderson), has accidentally boarded their ship causing severe damage to the spaceship’s life support systems. Facing dwindling resources and a potentially grim outcome, the ship’s medical researcher, Zoe Levenson (Anna Kendrick), emerges as the only dissenting voice against the clinical logic of both her commander, Marina Barnett (Toni Collette), and the ship’s biologist, Kim (Daniel Dae Kim).
Our Favorite Quote:'This is one of those rare opportunities that could truly give my life meaning beyond anything I could imagine.' - Zoe Levenson (Stowaway) Click To Tweet
Jim: Okay. Commander Barnett, on behalf of the Hyperion team and the millions of people watching around the world, good luck, Godspeed, and we’ll see you back here in two years.
David Kim: [referring to the Yale cups] You wasted, what, eight hundred grams of your allowable personal effects on these? You don’t even care about the rivalry.
Zoe Levenson: No. But you do, David. Oh, it’s so easy.
David Kim: Okay. Five hours down. Two years to go.
Zoe Levenson: As your doctor, I’m telling you to drink that.
Marina Barnett: I’ve had the honor of participating in two missions to date. And I couldn’t be working with a more talented crew on this, my final, and third mission.
Zoe Levenson: Well, it’s only been a few hours, but it’s already a life changing experience. I’m thrilled to be here.
Zoe Levenson: To be honest, this isn’t where I thought I would end up. To me, my career was going to be research on Earth. I guess you never know where life’s going to take you.
Zoe Levenson: I applied to the HARP program because I thought it would be a funny story to be rejected by Hyperion. But now I realize this is one of those rare opportunities that could truly give my life meaning beyond anything I could imagine.
David Kim: My research is integral to maintaining and sustaining life on Mars long-term. We are taking the first steps to being able to call Mars a second home.
Marina Barnett: [referring to David and Zoe] I’m more than confident in their ability, and their training. I know they can handle anything that comes their way.
David Kim: [after they find Michael] Who the hell is this?
David Kim: [referring to Michael] Any idea if he’ll wake up?
Zoe Levenson: Honestly, I’m surprised he’s still alive.
Zoe Levenson: How the hell was he missed?
Marina Barnett: [referring to Hyperion] They’re looking into it.
David Kim: We don’t make mistakes like this.
Zoe Levenson: Did he stow away on purpose?
Zoe Levenson: [referring to her injured wrist] How are you not screaming in pain right now?
Marina Barnett: It hurts.
Zoe Levenson: Listen. You’re fine. You’re safe. No. You’re safe. You’re fine. Commander!
Michael Adams: No, no. Did we take off? Did we take off?
Michael Adams: I got to get back to my sister! Please, my sister, she’s alone. Please I got to get back
Marina Barnett: Michael. I hear you, Michael, but we’re not going back.
Michael Adams: What do you mean, “We’re not going back?” This is a two year mission. Please.
Marina Barnett: We’re moving too fast. We don’t have enough fuel to turn around.
Michael Adams: I got to get back home.
Marina Barnett: I understand. I do.
Zoe Levenson: [referring to Michael] He’s stable. He just needs some time alone to rest and process everything.
Michael Adams: First off, I just want to apologize for that freak-out I had back there. It was just kind of a shock to wake up here.
Michael Adams: Also, I’m not going to just sit around. I know the ship is small, and it’s a lot smaller now that I’m here. And I’m sure there’s some grunt work to be done. And I can learn fast. I can do whatever it takes.
Zoe Levenson: [to Michael] We’re sorry that you missed the filet mignon. But this is the next best thing. We think it’s spaghetti.
David Kim: I should warn you now that Zoe thinks she’s the in-flight entertainment.
Zoe Levenson: Were you working on a proposal for HARP?
Michael Adams: I actually plan on putting something together for the next mission.
Zoe Levenson: I’m not sure you need to apply anymore.
Michael Adams: [chuckles] Yeah. I guess not.
Zoe Levenson: I realize your first visit was a little intense, but this happens to be my favorite spot on the ship.
Michael Adams: [as they look out into space] Wow. Pictures don’t do it justice.
Zoe Levenson: No. Not at all.
David Kim: [referring to the jazz music] There. You hear how it’s unpredictable? But it still has rules. They’re generally playing together, but once in a while, a player or two will drift off into their own little groove. There. You hear it?
Michael Adams: No. I don’t. It’s like it sounds like a hot mess.
David Kim: Oh, well, that’s what I like about it. It’s not obvious. And, I mean, sometimes it can be a little bit unpleasant. But it’s pure expression. And it usually finds a balance.
Zoe Levenson: I will never get used to how little material is between us and space.
Michael Adams: That I know.
Michael Adams: When they started adding a third passenger, to make up for the weight, they made the functional module almost half the size, and removed a protective layer of shielding.
Zoe Levenson: Hey, that’s not helpful.
Michael Adams: Just facts.
Zoe Levenson: Not a helpful thing to say.
Michael Adams: It’s just facts.
Michael Adams: [as Zoe’s patching him up] Thanks.
Zoe Levenson: I mean, it’s literally my job.
Michael Adams: Not just for this. I mean, like you’ve just kind of gone out of your way to make me feel welcome, so.
David Kim: Commander, this can’t be something we rely on. These batches can die at any moment, and I could lose everything I need for Mars. Commander, this research is years of my life. We both know how important it is. Are we sure we want to throw it all away while we still have a chance to fix the CDRA?
Marina Barnett: There is no chance, David. It’s gone.
Michael Adams: [leaving a message for his sister] I’m really getting my groove here. You know, I thought at first I was probably going to be a burden to, you know, the crew and everyone here, but they’re actually putting me to work. I hate that it happened this way. But I’m thinking that this might actually turn out to be best for me, and for us, in the long run.
Marina Barnett: I need you to walk me through every option. Every single possibility.
Marina Barnett: There’s no easy way to say this. The carbon-dioxide scrubber is damaged permanently. The lithium-hydroxide canisters were only ever meant to be a temporary solution. We only have enough oxygen on board for two people.
Zoe Levenson: So what are you saying?
Marina Barnett: We can’t make it to Mars with Michael on board. We’ll end up asphyxiating on carbon dioxide a few weeks before we land. I mean, this ship. Yeah, it was overbuilt for two. And Hyperion started to take a chance pushing it to three. But it just can’t handle four.
Marina Barnett: Look, Michael was on board when we launched, so he used up extra oxygen and fuel. Okay? We barely had enough to make it to here.
Marina Barnett: It’s just I can’t risk both of your lives for the possibility that you could save him.
Zoe Levenson: There must be something we can do. Anything.
David Kim: So how much time does he have left?
Marina Barnett: I’ll talk to him today. I’ll give him a few days.
Zoe Levenson: No, hold on. You’re going to talk to him today? What are we going to do, ask him to walk out of the airlock?
Zoe Levenson: Exactly how much time do we have before it’s too late?
Marina Barnett: Technically, twenty days.
Zoe Levenson: Okay. Then we should take that time.
David Kim: No, we need as much of that margin of error as possible in case anything else happens.
Zoe Levenson: Margin of error? What hypothetical situation could be worse than the one we’re in right now?
David Kim: Worst-case scenario is he still dies, but we die along with him.
Marina Barnett: Zoe, realistically, every day he’s still here, it’s a danger to all of us. I am telling you, Hyperion has anyone with a PhD down there trying to work this out.
Zoe Levenson: And they’re not here! And maybe we can think of something that they haven’t!
Zoe Levenson: Twenty days? Commander, I mean, if there’s really nothing we can do, we have to take someone’s life. Is it unreasonable to just take that time and make sure we’ve gone over everything?
Marina Barnett: Ten days. That’s it.
Zoe Levenson: And what do we tell Michael in the meantime?
Marina Barnett: Look, we were chosen to be here. We’ve been trained psychologically and otherwise. He hasn’t. He can’t contribute to any of this in any meaningful way. So I think the best course of action is to just keep this between us.
Marina Barnett: For their sanity, they need to try this.
Marina Barnett: I still need this crew to be able to perform critical tasks. No, they cannot do that if they are devastated by guilt.
David Kim: [referring to Hyperion] Wouldn’t they already know if there were some way to save him?
Marina Barnett: I know how you feel, but it’s not the directive at the moment.
David Kim: We’re endangering ourselves. The longer we take, the harder it’ll be when we’re forced to take the final step.
David Kim: [to Michael] The CDRA is destroyed beyond repair. And even with every safety measure we have, there is no way for all of us to survive. We’ve known for three days now. Hyperion has had people working around the clock on the problem since then. Zoe, the commander, and I, we tried everything we could to figure out a way. But mathematically, with you here, everyone on board would suffocate before we ever made it to Mars. Every day you’re with us presents a danger to the crew, and to the entire mission.
David Kim: Zoe convinced Barnett to exhaust our safety margins to try and save you. To try and figure something out.
Michael Adams: Isn’t there anything we can figure out? Is there?
David Kim: No. Hyperion would already know by now.
David Kim: [gives him some pills] This would be painless. And you would just fall asleep. I’m sorry, Michael.
Michael Adams: Hey, Ava. I know this transition hasn’t been the easiest for you. And as hard as it is for me to know that, I got to face the fact that I’m not going to be there with you every step of the way.
Zoe Levenson: You don’t have to do this.
Michael Adams: There’s nothing else to do.
Zoe Levenson: We don’t know that.
Michael Adams: Look, I know you fought for me, okay? But this is different. This is, it’s hopeless, you know?
Zoe Levenson: It isn’t.
Zoe Levenson: [to Michael] We’ve got some time. And that’s a last resort. I’m not giving up on you.
Zoe Levenson: No, he didn’t f***ing kill himself, David! That’s what you wanted, isn’t it? You had no right to disclose anything. And you especially had no right to go into my lab, and steal my medication for something like this!
David Kim: I was trying to protect us.
David Kim: What don’t you get about this, Zoe? We are already doing everything we can to try and save him. There’s nothing else! I’m just trying to salvage what’s left of this mission, and that includes you! Michael died the moment we took off.
Zoe Levenson: You wanted to get rid of him three days ago. You weren’t even trying to figure this out.
David Kim: Not even trying? I destroyed all of my research! This! This right here! This is the only thing keeping us alive right now. My last three years of training are now meaningless. My next two years of experimentation are gone! You of all people should know how much this work means to me. And I gave it all up to try and save him! And what the hell have you done, Zoe? What have you done?
Zoe Levenson: Commander. I understand that your duty is to protect your crew, and the risk that you’ve taken by giving Michael more time. We were all put in this situation. We have to be willing to expend more than just resources.
Zoe Levenson: I think we should put ourselves at risk. I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I didn’t try everything I could to save his life.
Marina Barnett: [to Zoe and David] Guys? Listen. You two never trained for anything with this much complexity. So, keep your cool. Overcommunicate. And take your time. Do not rush.
Marina Barnett: [as they’re climbing up the tether] Status check?
Zoe Levenson: We’re good. It’s starting to get easier. Theoretically.
David Kim: Speak for yourself.
Zoe Levenson: You enjoying the view up there, David?
David Kim: Not funny, Zoe.
David Kim: Zoe! Come on! Let’s go!
Zoe Levenson: No. We can’t just leave this here. This is the oxygen for Michael.
David Kim: There isn’t enough time! You’re going to have to leave it!
David Kim: [as they’re climbing up the tether again] I’m dying here, Zo.
Zoe Levenson: It’s going to start getting easier. Come on.
David Kim: Look. We’ve still got a full tank leaking up there. We’re going to lose it. If we can get to it, the three of us can still make it. Right now, the storm is lethal out there. Maybe we can wait it out. How long is the storm going to last?
Marina Barnett: Hours.
Michael Adams: I can go.
Marina Barnett: Michael. Why do you want to, mate? You don’t have the trainings.
Zoe Levenson: If you don’t make it back, one of us dies too.
David Kim: I’m willing.
Zoe Levenson: I’ll go. I can do it. I can do it.
Zoe Levenson: David. I can’t let you do this. So make it back home, go have a kid, and send them to Yale, okay?
Marina Barnett: I wish I could do it.
Zoe Levenson: I know. I know.