Genre: Biographical Drama
Running Time: 96 minutes
Director: Clint Eastwood
Main Cast: Tom Hanks, Aaron Eckhart, Laura Linney, Anna Gunn, Autumn Reeser, Holt McCallany, Jamey Sheridan and Jerry Ferrara
The story of Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger’s “forced water landing” of US Airways flight 1549 is delivered wonderfully to the cinema by Clint Eastwood and Tom Hanks, portraying Sully as a subtle everyday hero.
The film follows the story of the crash of the Airbus A320 onto the Hudson on January 15th 2009 and the following investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). Tom Hanks stars as Capt. Sullenberger, with Aaron Eckhart (First Officer Jeff Skiles), Laura Linney (Lorrie Sullenberger), Anna Gunn, Autumn Reeser, Holt McCallany, Jamey Sheridan and Jerry Ferrara in supporting roles.
But the undeniable star of this film is Hanks, who portrays Sully in such a wonderful and inspiring way. Hanks gives a master class on how to portray an everyday man who suddenly becomes a national hero. Hanks portrays Sully as a subtle man, who is just trying to save the people onboard his plane during the crash, while trying to save his job in the aftermath. Hanks makes it believable to the viewer that he is traumatized by what has just transpired and it gets you to feel for Sully, wanting to reach out and give him a hug. To put it in simple words Hanks provides a professional tribute to a man that was all about professionalism.
Hanks performance does also have a negative side. From the get go of the investigations, Sully is portrayed to be right at every opportunity with him attacking the NTSB, which he has every right to but, This comes back to the way in which the film is directed. The director of Sully is acclaimed director Clint Eastwood and he has shaped the story to make it feel like that the NTSB are the bad guys for thinking of dishonoring an American hero such as Capt. Sullenberger, where they were merely just trying to do there jobs and found out as much information as they could about the incident. They are portrayed at the beginning as attackers of Sullenberger, asking questions about drug consumption, how much sleep he had or whether there were any problems at home. I feel like this scene could have been done more subtly and not seem so attacking, therefore changing the viewers perception of the NTSB from attackers to just people inquiring about the incident and doing their jobs.
Apart from this Eastwood has shaped an insightful movie, taking us into the deeper parts of the story and into the mind of Sullenberger. Hanks was in close contact with Capt. Sullenberger throughout filming, gaining insight from him and shaping the movie to be as truthful as possible, which is evident through Hanks acting and how Eastwood has structured the film. The plane crash feels realistic and like we are apart of them and it fits right into the narrative and allows for a continuous flow through the story. While the inquiry stages of the film don’t feel boring but naturally flow from action to talking seamlessly. The films narrative is based on Sullenberger’s autobiography “Highest Duty”, which was co-written with Jeffrey Zaslow. The influences of the book are seen throughout the film as we are shown cutaway shots of planes crashing into New York and of a military jet landing, which enhance Hanks and Eastwood’s portrayal of the traumatized Capt. Sullenberger post crash. While the insights from Sullenberger enable the crash screens to be replicated for our eyes on screen.
Sully is wonderfully crafted and wonderfully delivered across the park. Apart from the slight attack on the NTSB it runs smoothly through its action sequences and is intense throughout. Sully is an insightful thriller that will have you leaving feeling better getting into a plane then other plane crash movies.
Front Row Opinion