a plane crash, a young therapist, Claire (Anne Hathaway),
is assigned by her mentor (Andre Braugher) to counsel the
flight's five survivors. When they share their recollections
of the incident – which some say include an explosion
that the airline claims never happened – Claire is intrigued
by Eric (Patrick Wilson), the most secretive of the passengers.
Just as Claire's professional relationship with Eric –
despite her better judgment – blossoms into a romance,
the survivors begin to disappear mysteriously, one by one.
Claire suspects that Eric may hold all the answers and becomes
determined to uncover the truth, no matter the consequences.
One recent movie which our national airline would not be promoting anytime soon is Alex Proyas’ Knowing starring Nicolas Cage. The plane crash scene in the picture proved to be so intense and disturbing for us, we didn’t think we would want to board an aeroplane anytime soon. After viewing this Rodrigo Garcia directed movie that starts off with, no surprises here, a plane crash, we are further convinced that shows like these definitely have a psychological effect on the average human being.
In this movie, our protagonist is a young therapist who is assigned by her mentor to counsel the a crashed flight's five survivors. They begin sharing their memories of the tragedy, and different versions surface. In fact, some say there is an explosion which the airline states never happened. The pretty therapist becomes attracted to the most secretive of the surviving passengers. Thing get weirder as the movie’s 93 minutes pass by, and the audiences are brought along for the ride, guessing what the whole big twist the filmmakers have in store for them.
It has been a good 10 years since audiences are introduced to the concept of the “big twist” ending, thanks to a certain M. Night Shyamalan. Hence, seeing how this movie sets up the whole mysterious tone and approach, one can only sigh in disbelief and disappointment when the shocking (at least the filmmakers believed that it was shocking while producing the movie) truth is revealed. But for the rest of us? We can only shake our heads before completely forgetting the movie a few months down the road.
Taking on the role of the therapist is Anne Hathaway. She loses her sweet princess image to play this wide eyed character who, well, doesn’t really engage viewers. Playing the mysterious passenger is beefcake Patrick Wilson, who has a few obligatory topless scenes to show off his well toned bod. There is some awkward chemistry between the two leads, and judging by the limited theatrical release in the United States, one wonders what the two respectable stars are thinking about their decision to star in this disastrous (literally and figuratively) flick.
To give writer Ronnie Christensen some credit, the movie does set itself up pretty well. There are perilous and seat grabbing moments which you will wish that you need not ever fly again – such is the power of a well executed plane crash scene. Forget about watching it on the next plane trip overseas. And if the people working at our national airline are smart enough, they would not include this on their in flight entertainment.
Considering this movie did not get a wide theatrical release in United States, this Code 3 DVD contains a bit of special features. The Commentary with Director Rodriogo Garcia & Patrick Wilson, where the actor talks about how he is attracted to the script when he first read it three years ago, while the director talks about expecting “the big surprise” and how a love story is told in a unique way. In Analysis of the Plane Crash, we get 16 minutes of behind the scene footage of how the intense sequence was shot – beware of the spoiler which you’d see seconds into this featurette though. The Manifest and Making of Passengers is a 23 minute where the cast and crew talk about the production of the movie. It’s interesting to hear writer Ronnie Christensen talk about the emotional aspects of the script. There are also three Deleted Scenes, one of the involving Hathaway’s calming and peaceful dream.
The disc’s visual transfer is clear, and is presented in its original English dialogue.
Review by John Li
Posted on 18 July 2009