Flightplan

A combination of good writing and directing can result in outlandish stuff being acceptable in a decent Hollywood thriller. But that doesn’t happen here: Director Robert Schwentke and his writing staff fail on both fronts with this movie. Jodie Foster stars as an anxious mom whose daughter goes missing on a plane flight. The plane manifest shows that her daughter never even boarded the plane. She’s recently widowed and clearly under a lot of stress. Is she crazy, or is somebody pulling a fast one? One too many twists, and some bad-taste moments, kill the film’s potential after the midway point as it becomes standard, routine stuff. Foster’s character knows the plane inside and out because she helped design it, and that seems a little too convenient. In the post-Sept. 11 world, if you’re going to make a film about terror on an airplane, you better be on your game. Schwentke’s effort is bush league. Foster’s performance is just a rehash of her Panic Room work. She’s slumming.

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