Reel Talk: ‘Flight’

by Justine Love, contributing writer

A soldier, a prizefighter, a father, a civil rights activist, an angel … and now a pilot!

Who could that possibly be? No other than the two-time Academy Award winner, Denzel Washington. Fasten your seat belts and put your tray tables in their upright and locked position because you’re going for the ride of your life in his latest film.

“Flight” is carefully constructed under the direction of Robert Zemeckis, former Steven Spielberg assistant and famed director of “Castaway,” “Contact” and “Polar Express.”

This action-packed, thought-provoking thriller stars Washington as the seasoned pilot, “Whip Whitaker,” whose heroic piloting skills during a major plane crash attract a major media frenzy. The film also features Don Cheadle as “Hugh Lang,” John Goodman as “Harling Mays” and Tamara Tunie as “Margaret Thomason.”

The crew’s inhibitions are questioned under the investigation of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), despite an amazing landing. Cheadle, the quick-thinking attorney and conscious of Whitaker, is able to spin the logistics of the event that turn it into an even bigger scandal. Goodman’s performance as the gritty “street pharmacist” brings a bit of comedic relief from the immensity of this thriller. Tunie’s realistic performance as the senior flight attendant is so realistic it makes viewers feel as though they’re flying the plane as well.

“Flight” makes you want to take a look into your own life as the film delves deep into relatable societal issues. Beyond the action, the film’s undertones focus on the behavioral consequences of substance abuse and those who enable it. It also looks into the lives of those affected by the behavior of Washington’s character.

If you’ve never had a fear of flying, you will after this.

I give this movie 4 1/2 Heartbeats! A must see!

Justine Love is the director of Community and Public Affairs for CBS Washington, including WPGC. Check back for more Reel Talk reviews.


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