As Kirkland's property is being returned to him upon his exit from jail on a contempt charge, the handle on his briefcase changes positions. As the property officer slides a receipt for his property towards Kirkland, the handle is up. As Kirkland signs the receipt, the handle is down. The scene ends with the handle being up.
Kirkland and the Judge converse quite easily in the cabin of helicopter - difficult enough unless shouting more or less directly into each others' ears, impossible when one party is wearing a full coverage noise canceling headset.
When a helicopter's motor fails, for whatever reason, it does not just drop straight out of the sky - the pilot puts the nose into a shallow dive and the rotor auto-rotates providing some lift. The chopper glides much like a fixed-wing aeroplane, provided it is high enough to begin the glide and develop enough rotor speed - which the judge would have made sure of since he was anticipating (or at least planning for) running out of fuel.