Here is the premise: On Thursday, January 15th, 2009, the world witnessed the “Miracle on the Hudson” when Captain, Chesley Sullenberger, nicknamed “Sully” (Tom Hanks) glided his disabled plane onto the frigid waters of the Hudson River, saving the lives of all 155 aboard. However, even as Sully was being heralded by the public and the media for his unprecedented feat of aviation skill, an investigation was unfolding that threatened to destroy his reputation and his career.
I remember being glued to the TV watching with the rest of America the heroic rescue by the awesome New York fire department and police department. I remember thinking that in these days of people thinking of themselves, here is not only the heroic efforts of the fire and police departments, but Chesley Sullenberger was and is a man among men; an honest to goodness hero.
Eastwood does an awesome job bringing a man bigger than life to life on screen and showing the human side of not just him but the whole system; good and bad. Eastwood chooses to intertwine Sully’s past when he first learned to fly, when he is in the military flying, the actual flight, and the aftermath where Sully is investigated. In the hands of a less experienced director this would not have worked, but Eastwood does it very well and you never get lost during the movie.
Tom Hanks and Aaron Eckhart embodies the essence of the two pilots that made the tough choices that saved the lives of 155 passengers, Hanks especially takes on Sully’s mannerisms and humbleness to a tee. Hanks is the master of playing a low key real hero, showing us that heroes aren’t always loud and boisterous. Laura Linney also stars as Sully’s wife, who is at home with their kids watching everything on TV like the rest of us and standing by her husband not knowing what the investigation will do to his career.
I highly recommend this movie, very well done.