inflight entertainment


Flightplan and Red Eye show, once again, Hollywood’s penchant for overkill. The same concept, almost similar plots… I think I even noted some similar tracks in the music 🙂

They follow the idea of terrorism on aeroplanes.. though the idea is to spread terror elsewhere. Possibly after Flight 714, that taboo ground might too actually get broken.

Red Eye, I saw first.. and so that will go up on the scanner. Young lady boards aircraft, guy sitting next to her looks like good company, until he tells her very calmly that if she doesn’t do exactly what he says; someone is going to die. And if she does, someone really important is going to die. Nice.
Rachel McAdams manages to pull off a simplistic thriller by acting the ‘deer-in-the-headlights’ convincingly enough; without managing to screw around with her makeup. I confess, I was initially more interested in how terrifying Cillian Murphy could be post-Scarecrow.. and the man is good. Note the use of the word ‘good’ here, McAdams steals the show completely as the woman saving the day.
The movie works as the thriller it is meant to be.. keeping you riveted enough for runtime. Towards the end, one could find fault (explosions can apparently be contained by closing the door).. but hell.. it wouldn’t be fun if the bad guys won now.

Flightplan, sadly, thus suffers from being second-watched. Jodie Foster plays a character we could remember from Panic Room, and is definitely a far better actress. Lady boards aircraft with her little girl, and her husband’s body in a coffin. 3 hours into the flight, her daughters missing. 3 and a half hours into the flight.. her daughter apparently never existed. Definitely, an attempt at making something a lot less straightforward than Red Eye. However, when the final denouement comes, one is left feeling more than a little let-down.
Foster, as I mentioned, is a far better actress.. and definitely pulls in a great performance. The direction is very good for a thriller, and more than one sequence is a knockout. Its set in one of the largest planes in the world.. but towards the end, the effect of claustrophobia is conveyed beautifully. Sadly though, the scripting is a little ordinary in that one gets the feeling – ‘They didn’t know what to do here.’ More than one loose end detracts as well.. but worth a watch for that Foster lady.

Even if the two movies are, in the end, similar enough to wonder if any ‘inspiration’ is happening.. the focus of the movie in each case is very different. Red Eye ranges solely eithin the 2 seats of McAdams and Murphy.. and the chemistry is what really sets up the finale. And it works perfectly.. a little bit on the unbelievable side, but good fun. Flightplan zooms around the plane in a frantic search for a child that seems to have never existed, while Foster has to hold it together. It works to an extent, but the totality seems to miss something.

Probably perfect inflight entertainment 🙂


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