This Flight Never Truly Takes Off
Snoogans - wrote on 09/18/16
'Sully' is the new biopic from director Eastwood that recounts the events surrounding the famed "miracle on the Hudson" plane landing from back in 2009. The narrative jumps around in time a lot. First we start with the aftermath of the incident, looking at the immediate effect on the plane's captain Sully. He has nightmares about planes crashing into New York and he's being questioned by investigators on whether or not his "in the moment" actions were justified as the safest route possible (despite no death or serious injury to every person on the flight). It seems this committee of individuals is more interested in finding a flaw with his personal tactics to have reason for being upset at the loss of a giant expensive aircraft being salvaged from the river. This story angle is the driving force of the plot, but it's evident this is not enough to sustain this very short film. At certain points, we flash back to the actual incident. We see the moments leading up to the accident and the entirety of the flight is experienced three times in total. The different viewpoints could've been put into one solid elongated sequence to sustain tension. I felt no real sense of danger during the multiple runs. The immediately following rescue had much more attention. There felt a great amount of congratulatory "pat-on-the-back for your heroism" in this and more so in the finale. The film had been avoiding that stigma with the constant questioning of our Sully's actions from the start, but all of that is thrown out the window in closing when Sully is deemed un-faltered after making one pointed rebuttal and a short inspiring speech. This renders all of the added drama to basically filler. Two super short flash backs to his early flying career serve no purpose to the story, as well. All of these scenes, plus the triple showing of the flight, all felt like filler to me. It seems there wasn't enough of a story here to warrant a full-length theatrical film. It's all well made and acted, but leaves so much more desired in the end.