Flight: New York Film Festival 2012

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New York Film Festival 2012: Flight

New York Film Festival 2012: Flight


Robert Zemeckis makes a welcome, if not entirely successful return to live-action filmmaking with this character study of an airline pilot on the edge. Denzel Washington is terrific as Whip Whitaker, a cocaine addict, deadbeat dad and shameless alcoholic. He also happens to be an aviator of exceptional skill, which comes in handy when the commercial jet he’s flying from Orlando to Atlanta malfunctions. As is to be expected from a Zemeckis production, the resulting crash sequence is a master class in taut, tense spectacle. But when the action shifts exclusively to ground level—where Whip fights a potential lawsuit and battles his own personal demons—the movie gets much choppier. Washington’s multilayered performance and Zemeckis’s consistent technical prowess can’t entirely counterbalance a ham-fisted screenplay by John Gatins (Real Steel) that wallows in all the clichés of the addiction-recovery-redemption genre. (Opens Nov 2.)—Keith Uhlich

Showtimes and tickets for Flight

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