Not Pictured: The Plane (PHOTO CREDIT: Kenneth Rexach)

Starring: Gerard Butler, Mike Colter, Yoson An, Tony Goldwyn, Daniella Pinda, Kelly Gale, Rami Adeleke, Haleigh Hekking, Lily Krug, Joey Slotnick, Oliver Trevena, Paul Ben-Victor, Quinn McPherson

Director: Jean-François Richet

Running Time: 107 Minutes

Rating: R for Guns and Machetes

Release Date: January 13, 2022 (Theaters)

What’s It About?: I don’t work in the airline industry, but I’m pretty sure the flight in Plane never should have been cleared for takeoff. (Although to be fair, that is the conclusion that the majority of the airline workers in this movie arrive at.) Anyway, widowed Captain Brodie Torrance (Gerard Butler) just wants to get through this one last flight before he’s able to visit his daughter Daniela (Haleigh Hekking). But instead, his titular aircraft is struck by lightning, and he’s forced to make an emergency landing in a remote jungle in the Philippines. He sticks the landing, but now he’s got to deal with a bunch of thirsty, irritable passengers, one of whom is a prisoner (Mike Colter) charged with homicide who for some reason is being extradited on a commercial flight. And an even bigger headache arrives when they discover that they’re in an essentially lawless area that’s run by a militia that may just be interested in holding them for ransom.

What Made an Impression?: I’ve never really been a fan of the Gerard Butler Brand of Action Thrillers, which tend to posit that the world is a sick, violent place, and someone has to stand up if anybody is going to survive. Sure, kidnappings and coups do happen in the real world, but that doesn’t mean that movies about them have to be so joyless. But while it’s not my cup of cinematic tea, there appears to be a loyal audience for this type of genre flick. So for those of you in the market, you’ll be pleased to know that Plane has a clear premise, clearly established stakes, and cleanly shot action. I at least appreciated that the beachside setting allowed for plenty of sunny cinematography. I’m still not a Butler convert, but I respect him for committing to what works for him.

Plane is Recommended If You Like: Olympus/London/Angel Has Fallen, Chuck Norris and Steven Seagal’s Complete Filmographies

Grade: 2.5 out of 5 Planes