(Robert Zemeckis, 2012)
Reviewed by Dave Lancaster
Summary: Robert Zemeckis' return to live action filmmaking is a masterclass with standout action and drama headlined by an Oscar worthy Denzel Washington.
Oscar winning filmmaker spent the last decade solely in CGI and motion capture, directing the likes of 'The Polar Express', 'Beowulf' and 'A Christmas Carol' - three films that had the drive of his earlier works 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit' and 'Back to the Future' but lacked the dramatic resonance of his Tom Hanks classics 'Castaway' and 'Forrest Gump'. With 'Flight', we are reminded just why he's such a talent.
Denzel Washington is on Oscar nominated form as Whip Whitaker, a functioning alcholic and coke addict who just about holds it together enough to pilot passenger jets. As he boards the plane he's still drunk, but Zemeckis makes that fact the least of the pilot and the audience's worries as he builds layer upon layer of suspense to finally create one of film's most terrifying air crashes (even better than his own one in 'Castaway').
It's no secret that Whitaker's actions save the flight from certain catastophy. The real juice of the story comes after this initial half an hour. While some viewers may see the the resulting drama as lesser fare compared to the nailbiting opening, this is where John Gatins' Oscar nominated script really takes off.
'Flight' makes an interesting case that Whitaker saved the passengers because he was drunk and numbed away from panic. He's a mess when he's sober, but razor sharp when he's wired. The film also examines what makes a hero as well the public's addiction for clinging on to one to a point whereby they have to know everything about him.
Then the film adds another layer whereby the airline is investigated, prompting Whitaker to try and cover his tracks to save his career, reputation and deeper secrets. It's this segment that gives Washington a real chance to shine ala Ray Milland in 'The Lost Weekend', putting in one of cinema's greatest drunk acts.
As the narrative progresses, the line between hero and villain blurs. But this isn't just an aviation thriller or an addiction drama. Really, it's a film about identity. A pilot is a label, a job title, not a man of character traits. At what point should his wings be clipped? When should he take his head out of the clouds? 'Flight' is a film that examines mechanics of emotions. When it hits, it really soars.
Check out the trailer for 'Flight' HERE at Cinemas Online
Other film news
Ricky Gervais is officially making a movie centred around his most famous comedy creation: 'The Office' leader David Brent.
The first teaser trailer for Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs biopic has arrived, offering a steely glimpse at Michael Fassbender's take on the Apple Mac prodigy.
While it was previously known that Bradley Cooper was helping out to produce a TV series version of one of his breakout films, 2011's Limitless co-starring Robert De Niro, it has now been revealed in a first look trailer that Cooper will appear as a star as well.
An eclectic mix of talent including the likes of Gemma Jones, Ant & Dec and shows such as 'Happy Valley' and 'True Detective' were honoured at the 2015 BAFTA TV Awards.
Up until now, 'The Incredible Hulk' might as well not have existed in the Marvel universe. The Edward Norton starrer from 2008 was made by Universal, not Disney and while it had a post credits cameo from Robert Downey Jr's Tony Stark, it has largely been ignored in the studio's canon since Mark Ruffalo rebooted the lead role of the green, angry superhero. But that's all changed.
Martin Freeman has joined the Marvel cinematic universe, having just signed on for a role in 'Captain America: Civil War' alongside Chris Evans.
'Indiana Jones 5' has been a rumour ever since the underwhelming 'Kingdom of the Crystal Skull' was a box office sensation back in 2008, but now its development has been confirmed by producer Kathleen Kennedy.
'John Wick 2' is officially in (pre) production. Lionsgate made the announcement that the surprise hit will be getting the sequel treatment.
A brief but enticing promo shows Jamie Dornan's Christian Grey getting dressed in an apartment in the night. Dressed in a dapper tuxedo, he slowly puts on a black masquerade mask as the scene shifts from colour to black and white (or shades of grey if you will).
Andrew Lesnie, best known as Peter Jackson's go to cinematographer, has died suddenly of a heart attack. He was 59.
There's been plenty of speculation about Oscar winner Jared Leto's take on the iconic Batman villain The Joker and now the first official image of the star's version of the character has been revealed.
Robert Downey Jr is known for his seemingly endless patience when it comes to doing the press run to promote his movies, but it appears like he's finally cracked. The Oscar nominated star just walked out a TV interview with Channel 4 News while promoting the recently released 'Avengers: Age of Ultron'.
Production on 'Pirates of the Caribbean 5: Dead Men Tell No Tales' has been a notorious one so far but no official images or videos have surfaced. Until now, that is.
Arriving nearly a full year before the film's release date, a surprisingly full-length teaser trailer for for the hotly anticipated superhero picture 'Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice' has got tongues wagging and jaws dropping. View it in HD here.
Oscar winning Hollywood couple Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones have patched up their differences are are "back, stronger than ever."
The veteran double Golden Globe nominated star appears to lose his cool with the director and lash out at the crew while on set in the clip. It isn't clear what film or television project the 'Day After Tomorrow' actor was shooting at the time but the explicit outburst was captured on a mobile phone in the hands of a crewmember within spitting distance of the actor who was once married to Meg Ryan.
Steven Spielberg's first time directing a Disney film has just added some star names to its core cast. 'The BFG' will co-star Bill Hader, Jemaine Clement, Rebecca Hall, Penelope Wilton alongside three-time Tony Award winner Mark Rylance who will play the titular âBig Friendly Giantâ and newcomer Ruby Barnhill as Sophie in the Roald Dahl adaptation.
The Suicide Squad has assembled. Director David Ayer set Twitter alight with the very first group cast picture from the production of the ensemble superhero flick 'Suicide Squad'.
Writer and director David Lynch is leaving the highly anticipated return of his cult TV show 'Twin Peaks', the auteur himself revealed. The reason? Money.
If you thought the mixture of Jonah Hill and Martin Scorsese in 'The Wolf of Wall Street' was an odd one, how about Hill being directed by 'Dirty Harry' himself - Clint Eastwood?