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Flight (I) (2012)

R  |   |  Drama, Thriller  |  2 November 2012 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 250,159 users   Metascore: 76/100
Reviews: 484 user | 445 critic | 40 from Metacritic.com

An airline pilot saves almost all his passengers on his malfunctioning airliner which eventually crashed, but an investigation into the accident reveals something troubling.



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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 13 wins & 40 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Father on Plane (as Adam Ciesielski)
Ken Evans
Conor O'Neill ...
Tiki Pot (as Charlie E. Schmidt Jr.)
Will Sherrod ...
Camelia Satou
Derek Hogue
Field Reporter


Whip Whitaker is a commuter airline pilot. While on a flight from Orlando to Atlanta something goes wrong and the plane starts to fly erratically. With little choice Whip crashes the plane and saves almost all on board. When he wakes up in the hospital, his friend from the airline union introduces him to a lawyer who tells him there's a chance he could face criminal charges because his blood test reveals that he was intoxicated with alcohol and cocaine. He denies being impaired, so while an investigation is underway, he is told to keep his act together. However, letting go of his addiction is not as easy as it seems... Written by Immanuel Ambhara

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Drama | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for drug and alcohol abuse, language, sexuality/nudity and an intense action sequence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

2 November 2012 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El vuelo  »

Box Office


$31,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$24,900,566 (USA) (2 November 2012)


$93,749,203 (USA) (8 February 2013)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The plane crash scene was rated number 3 on watchmojos top 10 plane crashes in movies. See more »


The NTSB does not do toxicology tests on flight attendants. Additionally, if Whip had the drug problem shown in the movie, the FAA mandated random drug screenings of pilots would have caught him before it got to the point it did in the movie. See more »


Hugh Lang: You gonna shoot me? Or can I come inside?
Whip: Yeah, come on inside. I'll shoot you inside.
See more »


Referenced in Revealed: Oscar Hopefuls (2013) See more »


Going Down
Written by Don Nix
Performed by The Jeff Beck Group (as Jeff Beck Group)
Courtesy of Epic Records
By arrangement with Sony Music Licensing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

An Emotional Tailspin
19 November 2012 | by See all my reviews

Denzel Washington is William "Whip" Whitaker, an alcoholic pilot who, after a night of heavy drinking, remains drunk well into the morning he is to fly a plane into Georgia. When his flight goes into a sudden tail- spin, Whip manages to save all but six lives through his crash-landing. Whip is a hero until his toxicology report comes up positive for everything under the sun, leaving the airline, Whip's union, his friends, and Whip in a tailspin of their own.

I have often thought that Denzel Washington is one of the finest actors to ever grace the silver screen, and he proves that assertion with a film that is assured to receive him a sixth Academy Award nomination. Here is a man broken beyond measure, stumbling through his lost life until unprecedented new stress is placed upon him. Not even the intervention of those he holds close can stop his self-destructive nature - or can it?

Robert Zemeckis has been on a sturdy path with animated films recently, so it was with a bit of apprehension that I saw his most recent live- action offering since "Cast Away". But have no fear. The direction here is clean, crisp, and efficient as ever, producing a simple, but powerful script by John Gatins, chock-full of par-none supporting roles by the likes of John Goodman, Don Cheadle, and Bruce Greenwood.

Undoubtedly the best part of the film - besides the wonderful cast - was the soundtrack. Joe Cocker, Bill Withers, and more are used expertly to mold into every emotion, sometimes emotional roller coaster, Whip experiences. Each song (some used more than once) slips seamlessly into the background and keeps the audience following more than the script.

"Flight" is a powerful, dark, character study about a man who has fallen to his darkest depths, and finds out how to fall farther. It sees Denzel Washington in top form and Robert Zemeckis' triumphant return to the live screen.

78 of 103 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
seriously? they sent him to jail for saving people's lives? otakutommychan
The main problem with this movie Brandon_Marlo
Nerdy detail complaint - it is very clear what type of airplane this is. mjl1966
His Alcoholism probably caused him to successfully land the plane lisasetser0409
In the real world, the crash would have been Whip's fault hish747
The Mini Bar - Realism robfabrams
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