It quite took me sometime to write a review for this movie,i had to watch it thrice because of how really it confused my subconscious mind.
I first decided to watch this movie with my younger brother,as i didn't know the scenes earlier all i thought is Denzel is going to act as a plain hero on this one,saving several souls on board,but the first minutes made me quite uncomfortable,the abuse that took around 7 minutes,the drugs sniffing ,the beautified naked model and the abusive language Denzel used,no wonder i felt so embarrassed wondering how the little champ could think of his brother.
For someone who has a fear of flying Flight doesn’t do much to make me feel any better about boarding an airplane for the first time. It does, however make for one hell of a movie. Not necessarily in an entertaining sense but as a dramatic character study of an extremely intriguing and controversial character. Denzel Washington stars as Whip Whitaker; an airline pilot with a closet (well, more like a warehouse) full of demons. After a typical night of indulgence in alcohol, cocaine and women Whip takes his seat in the cockpit of his commercial plane where once in the air, things go horribly wrong.
While recuperating in the hospital, Whip meets Nicole (Kelly Reilly), a recovering heroin addict, who nearly died of an overdose. She vows to never use again and tries to get Whip to follow her lead, but he hasn’t hit bottom hard enough. His legal counsel (Don Cheadle) and pilot union rep and friend (Bruce Greenwood) do everything they can to save Whip from prison and himself, but his addition has a tight grip. His best friend appears to be his drug dealer, Harling Mays (John Goodman) and Harling delivers, even when Whip is in the hospital.
Watching Whip try and navigate the natural issues that come up out of a situation like this is amazing because it’s not a generic take on addiction by any means. He seems at times to defy the typical consequences of being such an addict with the type of bravado that only Denzel Washington can bring to the screen. Whip moves through the wreckage of his life full steam ahead as things begin to crumble down around him and is so convincing that the viewer even begins to believe anything he says even as we watch him lose control. Remember the scene towards the end of Training Day when his character begins to realize for the first time he is not invincible and delivers the classic “I am King Kong” speech? Denzel tows that same line between owning the world and complete breakdown for the entirety of Flight and it’s a spectacle of an acting performance.
Flight is an amazing film, but it is often quite difficult to watch, in part because of Washington’s remarkable performance. Whip’s story is one of despair and self-destruction and Washington delivers every passionate moment with such intensity and realism that, at times, I (and others around me) found it nearly impossible to view. Direction Robert Zemeckis, working with a well-penned screenplay by John Gatins, doesn’t hold back on anything when showing the dismal, disgusting and dark side of addition and his star rises to it. Zemeckis shies away from nothing, not the lies, the denial, the binging, and the losses associated with addiction. From the film’s onset, we know Whitaker has already lost nearly everything, except his job and fellow addict, flight attendant, (Nadine Velasquez) – his wife, his home, and his teenage son, who now hates him and his dignity.