I felt it more of a documentary than a movie. But either way, Sully is a MUST WATCH. Arguably, one of the best movies this year. Story – little different than expected; Tom Hanks – top notch and impeccable; Direction – great.
The story is multi-faceted. Contrary to the expectations, Sully is more about the post mortem (post-incident investigation) of the Hudson tragedy and the emotions of the pilot, Captain Chesley Sullenberger – nicknamed Sully, on whose shoulders, lives of 155 people, including him, aboard the US Airways flight hanged in balance for the fateful 280 seconds. As sub-plots, it also covered stories of some of the passengers and the people involved in the rescue. The theme of the movie was very different from what I thought and that’s what I loved about it. It narrated the perspective of the pilot on why he did what he did (landing into Hudson river) and his thoughts for those couple of minutes. The story also delves into Sully’s life – his teens, youth, his family. Overall, the story carefully avoided the obvious and talked about the things most people wouldn’t know about – and that’s what makes it very interesting.
This is the first time I am sectioning out Screenplay separately in my review because this movie deserved it. Some of the dialogs left a lasting impression – especially the reporter putting out a big IF around the decision to land the plane on Hudson (which was the essence of the movie), or the wife of Sully realizing he was a part of that 155 endangered lives in that fateful flight. Some of Sully’s dialogs to the investigators, which had a hint of sarcasm, were brilliant. Also, Sully’s conversation with Skiles outside the investigation room which portrayed his leadership skills was highly inspirational.
I don’t think anybody could have played this role better than Tom Hanks. His expressions and dialog delivery perfectly fit the demands of the character of an immensely experienced and an honest pilot. Besides him, Aaron Eckhart – playing the role of the first officer, assisting the captain – is impressive. Although I felt he was largely overshadowed by Tom Hanks and barely managed to make his presence felt. The rest of the cast had a very small screen time to make any presence felt.
Clint Eastwood did a great job in keeping this movie very crisp. The idea of narrating the entire incident in pieces was great. More importantly, it was blended very well with the flow of the movie and never felt disruptive. What I also loved was his coverage of multiple sub-plots in a short time of 96 minutes while giving perfect justice to the main plot. However, he probably underutilized Aaron Eckhart or his character – which was equally involved in the entire incident.
I loved the movie, or documentary if I may say. A great watch – though low on entertainment value – but still a high-quality cinema.