Amelia Earhart, a Kansas girl, discovers the thrill of aviation at age 23, and within 12 years has progressed to winning the Distinguished Flying Cross for being the first woman to pilot a plane solo across the Atlantic Ocean. At age 39, she sets out on an attempt to circumnavigate the globe, an adventure that catapults her into aviation myth. Written by
Jim Beaver <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The movie shows Amelia Earhart finishing third in the first Santa Monica-to-Cleveland Women's Air Derby in 1929, but does not explain why. At the last stop before the final leg of the race to Cleveland, Amelia Earhart and her friend Ruth Nichols were tied for first. Nichols took off right before Earhart, but her aircraft clipped a tractor on the runway and flipped over. Instead of taking off, Earhart ran to Ruth's plane to drag her to safety. After Earhart was sure that Nichols was not seriously hurt, she took off for Cleveland but finished third largely due to her delayed takeoff. A Warner Bros. movie, Women in the Wind (1939), is also based on this air race and features a plot loosely inspired by this incident. See more »
(at around 1 min) When Amelia Earhart and George Palmer Putnam are about to enter the railroad station, you can clearly see the "no firearms permitted" sign on the entrance door at the extreme right of the frame, just behind the Asian couple exiting the building - obviously not in keeping with the era. See more »
Mira Nair brings to life the story of Amelia Earhart in Amelia. It stars Hilariy Swank, who just might have acted her way into another Oscar nomination and potential win. Alongside her is Richard Gere as George Putnam as her publicist and partner. The story starts with her emergence into the public eye when she tried to become the first woman to fly over the Atlantic Ocean. She does so but not alone, something she would later try to accomplish.
As her popularity grows so does Putnam's interest in his starlet. He wants her to be famous and to be loved. All she wants is to fly. Together they help make strides for female pilots everywhere. In the days leading up to and including the Great Depression, aviation was a primarily male dominated world, but that mattered very little for Amelia.
Along the way she becomes acquainted with Gene Vidal (Ewan McGregor), a pilot himself and someone that Amelia becomes very close to. Amelia's free spirited nature and desire to be set free come in the way with her feelings for Putnam, and as well as Vidal.
The film is not just about one person, but about a person's dreams, desires, and ambition. Amelia lectures and speaks out for women's rights, advocating for them to follow their dreams of either becoming a pilot like her, or just living their life the way they want to. She doesn't want to be tethered down or restricted.
Swank gives a solid performance as the flying ace. She both looks the part and acts the part very well. I must say that I did not know an awful lot about Amelia Earhart other than the common knowledge about her, but I feel like Swank embodied pretty much what I would expect Amelia to be. Swank has such confidence on screen and is not afraid to let it all hang out there. Though her performances in Boys Don't Cry and Million Dollar Baby are more impressive, this is a finely tuned character she has developed and a very likable one. Gere too gives a great performance. He does a great job of becoming Putnam ever so slightly with his voice. It's the tiniest of inflections but it is effective nonetheless.
Nair does a great job of capturing the beauty of flight and the ability that the world has to take you breath away. I didn't think this was a visually stunning film, but a well constructed biopic that tells a story we want to hear. I was interested in how she would present her final flight around the world and I was pleased with how she broke it up into segments and didn't try to make it recreate things we don't know about like in The Perfect Storm. The mystery is still there.
Parts of the film are a bit dry, clichéd, and repetitive, but overall this was a nice film about someone who shouldn't be forgotten. It's a good story with great characters, fine acting, and is pleasing to watch.
55 of 77 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?