• R, 2 hr. 19 min.
  • Drama
  • Directed By:    Robert Zemeckis
  • In Theaters:    Nov 2, 2012 Wide
  • On DVD:    Feb 5, 2013
  • Paramount Pictures

Flight Reviews

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recycled_angel recycled_angel September 30, 2014
"Flight" is a movie about a doomed flight of a commercial airliner of ~100 passenger which took off on a stormy day with a mechanical fault. Worst of all, it was piloted by an inexperienced assistant with a captain who didn't sleep much the night before the flight, drunk with blood alcohol twice the legal limit and drugged with coccaine. The dive and emergency landing killed only very few; simulation attempted by multiple other captains, well-rested, not drunk and not drugged, all failed to save anyone onboard by the way.

The question is: should this alcoholic captain be a hero who performed a miraculous landing, or be in jail for being drunk and high on coccaine at work? This is a simple moral dilemma. The pilot broke the rule, he got caught because of the terrible accident, and he should be jailed accordingly as anyone who broke the same rule. But then, if I am ever in such a doomed flight, I want him, howevere sleepy/drunk/high on drug, to pilot the plane.

The captain also had a moral dilemma, to confess that he is an alcoholic and be sentenced for breaking the law, or to lie when knowing lying will clear him of any charges. He didn't lie. And it complicated things. Why couldn't he tell of one final lie about his alcoholism and trouble with drugs?

The film could be done better, but the story and the impact of the underlying moral lessions could not have been better. Danzel, as Danzel, was excellent but the tension and torment was , as complex as they were, too subtle. His character is arrogant, shameless ("I chose to drink") and remorseless. He knew he is a hero for saving lives but at the same time he clearly knew his alcoholism is a problem. We saw him clear the old house of alcohol. We saw he filled the house again with alcohol. We knew he refrained from alcohol only to be drunk again at the federal hearing. He struggled. But I struggled to sense that until he decided to come clean at the hearing when pressed about his opinion that perhaps the flight attendant, someone he could see as his "second wife", was drunk. It took just one question to break him. Why?

I wouldn't have thought twice to lie that one final time. But I didn't take that moral flight. The story didn't help me take that moral flight. I wished to have got more from this movie.
Omar L September 21, 2014
The trouble with understanding alcoholism as a disease is that those of us who do not suffer from the ailment are required to believe that it is a disease that makes one compelled to consume a narcotic, the way a one is compelled to scratch at a skin disease. I'm not saying that alcoholism isn't a disease, but its concept as a disease is one that can be difficult to swallow. As a result, how much sympathy and patience are we expected to extend to one who suffers from this ailment, especially one who is responsible for hundreds of lives at a time? Would we allow someone who had epilepsy to be a surgeon? And would we allow alcoholics (recovering or not) to operate heavy machinery?

That question is not really answered in this movie, which chooses to show alcoholism as the identifying characteristic of Denzel Washington's character, Whip. His addiction may have had nothing to do with the crash that occurs, but it's still a time bomb that needs to be defused. The problem is that this is nothing we really haven't seen before in other stories. While Washington's performance is top notch, the story itself is lackluster, banking on Washington's likability to get us through the necessary beats that an addiction story must take us through. It makes for an enjoyable enough movie, but not one that anyone is required to see.
Bo L ½ September 18, 2014
Strong Denzel Washington film, in similar style to Cast Aaway, incredible action sequence involving a plane and CGI leading into a dramatic one man performance (Denzel gets a bit more actors to act against) about utter despair and fighting with all they got (survival or demon in the bottle).
It is a solid film, that will make you think about what we sometimes put people through due to bureaucracy and other emotional need for pointing fingers, while make you feel for Denzels characters, despite his loathfulness.
Zemeckis best film since Cast Away.
lezmartin lezmartin ½ September 17, 2014
I thought this may have been a bit of a bomb, so put off watching it, but it turned up on DVD at £3, so I thought I'd give it a go... I totally enjoyed it, and will watch it again, Sterling performances from everyone, its just over 2hrs, but this goes by very quickly....
Steve D December 13, 2012
I am not sure Denzel has given a bad proformance in his life and this one is great. However the story is straight forward and predictable.
Keating T ½ September 15, 2014
An original way to talk about substance abuse. Denzel is at his usual level.
Lucas Augusto C September 2, 2014
An electrifying thriller directed by Robert Zemeckis formidably in his cinematic triumph, starring Denzel Washington and Melissa Leo, "Flight" is captivating, mysterious and true.
David M September 2, 2014
OK we get it, alcoholism ruins lives & apparently causes plane crashes. But with all jokes aside it's a pretty good watch & the crash scene was bloody intense!
Luke M ½ June 27, 2014
Denzel Washington's captivating performance does much to elevate Flight above its poorly paced, Oscar-baiting script.
Kyle M ½ March 24, 2013
Washington done an unusual performance of his career as a drug-using drunk in this well-written, -casted and -performed tense drama that's better than his other film, "Philadelphia." (B)

(Full review coming soon)
Dan K ½ August 22, 2014
good overall message on battling addiction, minus some religious overtones at times.
Marc Cerone Marc Cerone ½ July 29, 2013
Excellent substance abuse drama bolstered by Washington's regal performance.
Areeque T ½ April 11, 2014
Gripping - both the presentation and the performances .
The Tornado The Tornado ½ August 16, 2014
It begins with a very realistic depiction of an airplane disaster, which was really cool. However, after that, the film starts to slow down, which has its pros and cons. The movie becomes more interesting as they uncover the mystery, but at the same time, some of the excitement wanes.
zizagamer zizagamer October 18, 2012
the man at his best again
Josh M April 1, 2013
Not entertaining what so ever. Flight is powerful, but also boring and lacks any excitement.
Petri J August 4, 2014
Pomminvarma Denzel vetää koko leffan pituisen Kummelin lentäjäsketsin ilman sketsiä.
Steve C August 3, 2014
I feel like the drug legalization debate is a real political conundrum that is done no favors by lightweight, cutesy reporting and rallies that pass out Doritos. Even if it has merit, how can you take it seriously? In the same way, this film tries to take a serious look at addiction and undies a lot of it with a silly John Goodman character. Unpleasant frequently, and not quite as profound as it thinks it is. But we'll acted.
lord r. lord r. ½ August 2, 2014
Introspective and powerful. Denzel continues to be the modern day Sidney Poitier. Commendable that his recent movies seem to have a religious or at least moral undertone.
Scott E ½ October 24, 2012
This film is NOT the type of film you would expect. This is less about an air tragedy and NOT a film that is a disaster movie or action movie. This is a film about alcohol and drug addiction. It is a heavy drama. Denzel is great.
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