5/10 Writer/director Neil Burger (“The Illusionist”, “Limitless”) is back after four years away from directing a feature film to bring us into outer space. While wonderful on a technical level, “Voyagers” comes up short in its overall plot, which is “Lord of the Flies” but set in space and in the future. With a budget under $30 million, this movie looks better than it should. The spaceship is appropriately futuristic and slick and the visuals look strong. The production design is perfect and the costume design is simple yet effective. Our young cast of actors do a fine job with the material given to them and have strong screen presence. Following “Don’t Tell a Soul”, Fionn Whitehead continues to get cast as a total jerk, to where I almost want him to play against type and be the lead in some romantic comedy for his next film. Tye Sheridan’s character was a little dry, but his performance was as good as it could be given the script. The final part of our trio, Lily-Rose Depp, did a great job and it was nice to see her in a larger role than her smaller bit parts in Kevin Smith films. The music and sound were great as Trevor Gureckis’s score was fantastic. Burger uses his score predominantly at the beginning and end of the movie and isn’t afraid to use silence throughout the middle of the movie to establish tension. Smart directors know that a lack of music can be just as powerful as using music and Burger knows this as well. Despite the cinematography and the aforementioned aspects looking and sounding terrific, Burger proves he is a better director than a writer as his script stumbles. In addition to the lack or originality and some underdeveloped characters, I didn’t buy into how quickly characters’ loyalties shifted. So many of the background characters went from friends to enemies back to friends in such quick fashion that it gave me whiplash. The people in the movie were all raised together from birth, spending literally every single day of their lives together, which would build an unbelievably strong bond. Just by letting their normal, human emotions and urges take over, those bonds all went out the window incredibly fast. While I have no doubt that group think can be terrible and many people will gladly follow the crowd, even if they know the crowd is wrong just so they don’t stand out and can remain liked, these transitions of morality should have been better developed. As loyalties shifted back and forth, I wanted for these cataclysmic shifts to feel more real. That being said, this is an entertaining, sleek looking movie with an attractive cast. If you set your expectations accordingly and don’t expect anything new and Earth shattering, you will likely enjoy this movie. I just hope Burger is able to leave the writing on his next film to a more skilled writer so he can focus on directing, which he is very talented at.

#LordOfTheSkies / #StarringFionnDickhead / #Dunjerk / #AuthorityReport / #BlueLiquidForBlueBalls / #EatingTyeFood

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