02 October 2016

'Sully' - Review

Review of 'Sully':

On 15 January 2009, a plane took off from New York to Seattle with 150 people on board. Shortly after takeoff, a flock of birds hit it and blew out both its engines. The standard solution in such a situation is to return to the airport. The pilot, Captain Chesley Sullenberger (Sully), had just seconds to make a decision. He chose instead to land the plane on the Hudson River - a very dangerous move. Miraculously, the plane landed safely and all the 150 people survived. Sullenberger became an American hero.

Clint Eastwood's Sully tells the story of that incident (which everybody knows) and more importantly, what happened behind the scenes (which everybody doesn't know). Because even as the American public and media went ballistic about Sullenberger's heroism, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) was conducting its investigation into the incident. And its initial direction was that Sullenberger had been reckless and irresponsible in landing the plane on the river - instead of taking it back to the airport.

The first half is average. The writing (script by Todd Komarnicki) and direction could have been better. The second half is the part that delivers. Eastwood tells the story in his trademark no-nonsense style. Aaron Eckhart as the co-pilot (sporting a thick mustache) and Laura Linney as Sullenberger's wife give solid performances. But the movie, needless to say, belongs to Tom Hanks. He portrays Sullenberger as a genuine hero. Not a movie/media hero who is flashy, flamboyant and larger-than-life. But a real hero who is no-frills, down-to-earth, simple and humble.

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