The title of Flight refers more to Denzel Washington‘s alcoholic character’s approach to life than it does to the harrowing airplane crash that opens the movie. Captain Whip Whitaker controls his drunkenness with cocaine. High on both alcohol and cocaine on that flight from Orlando to Atlanta, he calmly deals with a broken elevator jack screw that is forcing the plane into a dive by inverting it to stabilize the descent and then crash-landing in a field, saving almost everyone on board. That was the easy part. Navigating his post-crash life is far more difficult as he struggles with his addictions and the investigation into the crash and his state of sobriety. This is a movie about one man’s fight with alcoholism, or rather his journey to learn to face his alcoholism. It is well-made and well-acted. Washington is convincing enough that we even start to believe that he has things under control when, of course, as an addict, he is almost completely powerless. And while this movie is far from the misery-fest that was Leaving Las Vegas, to watch it is to spend a couple of hours with an alcoholic.
Planetary Scientist and Asst. Professor of Physics at University of Central Florida; Movie Buff; Trekkie; Jethro Tull fanatic; part-time actor, piano player, writer; and full-time husband and father. View all posts by JC