Wednesday, November 28, 2012


I love movies that seem impossible but have "Based on true events" at the beginning of the film.  Like the Texas Chainsaw Massacre- how on earth is that based on true events.  Flight has the same effect.  It raises the question, is it even possible to turn a commercial airliner upside down and fly it so for several minutes?

Well for starters this story is loosely based on terrifying stories of drunk pilots who project sob stories while they put thousands of lives at risk.  The "true" part only refers to pilots who have flown drunk and a loose connection with one particular alcoholic pilot who fought his addiction after he was imprisoned for flying intoxicated.  The incredible flight at the beginning of the movie in which Denzel Washington turns the commercial airliner upside down to keep it from crashing out of the sky never happened.

The first 45 minutes of the film was incredible.  Denzel's character while flawed, does something so incredible you forget how bad of a person he is.  After saving almost everyone on board, Denzel goes into hiding and struggles to fight his alcoholism   Denzel Washington's performance was absolutely incredible.  Not surprising- its what we have come to expect from the talented actor.  His performances always leave you feeling strongly one way or another about his character.  John Goodman's character was also quite entertaining.  However about half way through the movie, Denzel's character takes a bad turn and the character reverts back to his drinking habits.  The movie at this point seems to drag a little.  The momentum really slows down and you are really just waiting for the ending.

There were some subtle faith aspects to this film which I also thought was interesting.  The overarching question seemed to be was the issue that brought down the plane an act of God, was it God that gave Denzel the power to do something no other pilot alive could have done- drunk or sober, or was it simply the fact that Denzel was a remarkable pilot?  It always seems to me that faith really is a strong factor in flight whether you pray before take off, pray as you crash to the ground, or ask why God would do such a thing after a horrific crash.

Overall the film was good.  Denzel definitely deserves a nod for an Oscar however there are other actors that beat him this time around (more on that soon!).  While the flight catastrophe was impressive on the big screen, I don't see any reason not to wait for dvd.  Its worth a watch if only for Washington's excellent performance.  I give the film overall 2.5 stars though.

Movie poster from:

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