Gerard Butler thriller 'Plane' just about takes to the skies
Film review: Plane (15) – seen at The Light Cinema, Wisbech
Starring: Gerard Butler, Mike Colter, Yoson An and Daniella Pineda
Running time: 1hr 47 mins Director: Jean-François Richet
Where do I start with this one? It was pretty ridiculous, yet enjoyable at the same time – and it certainly had me on the edge of my seat. And, if you can look past several holes in the plot that were never really explained, I guess you can leave the cinema satisfied. But it will not win any awards – that is guaranteed.
We first meet rugged pilot Brodie Torrance (Butler) as he jostles his way through a Singapore airport on New Year’s Eve, ready to fly a small number of passengers to Tokyo, hoping to then reach Honolulu in time for the festivities with his daughter.
However, his plane suffers storm damage over the South China Sea and he and co-pilot Samuel Dele (Yoson An) are forced to land on a remote, rebel-controlled island in the Philippines.
As if Torrance, his small crew and passengers aren’t already in enough trouble, they also have to cope with handcuffed murder suspect Louis Gaspare (Colter), who is left under the control of our noble pilot after the death of his police guard, who perished alongside a flight attendant during the storm.
Not knowing of the island’s dangerous inhabitants, Torrance frees Gaspare from his cuffs and takes him on an exploratory mission, although the prisoner soon gives him the slip.
Torrance finds an abandoned warehouse where he miraculously gets an old phone to work to call for rescue, before being attacked by a lone rebel. He kills his assailant and is then reunited with Gaspare, who returns with weapons, presumably plundered from the rebels.
While this action is happening on one part of the island, the passengers, co-pilot and remaining attendant are captured by the rebels, a rescue party lands and an all-out action movie ensues as the two sides fight to the death.
Butler does an admirable enough job as Torrance, but Colter has little chance to develop his character and, apart from brief glimpses into the personalities of Dele and flight attendant Bonnie Lane (Pineda), the rest of the cast might as well be cardboard cut-outs.
But there is enough happening to make the viewer invest in their fight for safety, even though the ending takes rather a leap of faith to believe.
By Jeremy Ransome