Robert Schwentke directs Jodie Foster, Peter Sarsgaaard and Sean Bean in this Hitchcockian thriller where a bereaved airplane designer’s daughter vanishes mid-flight and no-one on board believes her.
Jodie frantic, trapped, hoodwinked and resourceful. Slumming it in glossy sub-Hitchcock homages for big paydays. The paranoia of 9/11 is draped all over this, using new security procedures as a psychological assault course for Foster to contort through. You can’t help but love her even if this mystery gets stuck in a holding pattern quite soon after it takes a potent turn. The finale is nowhere near as intense as the set-up and there’s just too much dead air in the second act. Yet Flightplan proves an ideal hotel room movie, it passes the time with a slick appealing averageness. There’s a sterile luminescence to the lighting. Everything is illuminated but cold and way too smooth. Undemanding but Jodie always deserves better… always.
Perfect Double Bill: The Lady Vanishes (1938)
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