What happens when a state of the art aircraft loses both its engines at an altitude lower than any other airplane in the history of Aviation?
“Sully” is a biopic of the events that followed the remarkably pulled off ditching by Capt. Chesley Sullenberger played by the two-time Oscar winner Tom Hanks. The story is retold through the eyes of Capt. Sullenberger, while most of the movie is in courtrooms showing the investigations subsequent to the so-called “Miracle on the Hudson”. Tom Hanks does perfect justice to the character of Capt. Sullenberger who went through a long trial of inquests. The story revolves around a normal man who didn’t want to be a cliché Hero, he was a man who performed his duty duly well and was being judged on the last minutes of a flight where he had to take a crucial decision. Based on Capt. Sullenberger’s book the “Highest Duty” and the true story, the movie is one of the best of Clint Eastwood’s works and sure is worth a watch.
US Airways flight 1549 took off from New York’s LaGuardia to layover at Charlotte Douglas International Airport but was forced to make an emergency landing in the chilly waters of the Hudson as a flock of Canadian Geese struck the engines, blowing them off. Capt. Sullenberger was left with less than a minute to make a fateful decision.
The film opens with a nightmare where Sully tries to fly the plane back to LaGuardia Airport but can’t make it due to complete loss of power in both engines and the flight crashes into a skyscraper, killing all on board and many more.
One can not perfectly recreate real-life crisis on screen but Clint Eastwood does what he does best and quite typically so. The story generously also shows the gallantry of other people involved in the incident, First Officer Jeffrey Skiles of flight 1549 played by Aaron Eckhart who stands faithfully with Sully throughout the movie and supports all his statements, the air traffic controllers, cabin crew, rescue personnel and Hudson ferry operators were all portrayed in great light and shown to perform their duties fearlessly. The only parts where the movie is more like a biopic is when Sully has flashbacks of his young days of flying and his phone calls with his wife played by Laura Linney who too shows complete faith in his decision, which is ultimately proven right.
You get to see some flawless performances, doubtlessly.
First Officer Jeffrey Skiles also gets the last odd laugh of the movie and it closes with an awkward, “OK, I guess we’re all going home now”.
Performing their duties was the motive and righteousness followed. Capt. Sullenberger commendably saved the lives of all 155 passengers and crew on board, the crash resulted in 0 fatalities and only minor injuries.
Disclaimer: The above review solely illustrates the views of the writer.