User Score
7.2

Generally favorable reviews- based on 327 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 22 out of 327
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  1. Mar 12, 2013
    4
    My advice would be to watch the first half of this film, which is generally original and captivating. When it gets about an hour in, you will begin to notice some overt cliche thrown in casually. By the end of the film, you will walk out feeling appalled that you have once again been tricked into watching a predictable and non-sensical hollywood plotline tailored for the un-thinkingMy advice would be to watch the first half of this film, which is generally original and captivating. When it gets about an hour in, you will begin to notice some overt cliche thrown in casually. By the end of the film, you will walk out feeling appalled that you have once again been tricked into watching a predictable and non-sensical hollywood plotline tailored for the un-thinking audience. Damn you Hollywood producers for relying on formula and ill conceived moral banality to ruin yet another film that had great potential. Expand
  2. Feb 20, 2013
    6
    The movie's synopsis is basic, and so is the film. After the first half an hour, everything slows right down and it turns into more of an insight into the mind of an alcoholic. It's a very long movie for a story that's been told many times, with just a few alterations. Towards the end, we see what a great actor Denzel is and we come to a satifying conclusion. This is certainly aThe movie's synopsis is basic, and so is the film. After the first half an hour, everything slows right down and it turns into more of an insight into the mind of an alcoholic. It's a very long movie for a story that's been told many times, with just a few alterations. Towards the end, we see what a great actor Denzel is and we come to a satifying conclusion. This is certainly a fascinating film to watch that will have you pondering over whether we should criminalise someone for drinking on the job or whether they deserve a second chance depending on the situation. But it's hardly a movie that would make my all time favourites list. Expand
  3. Nov 2, 2012
    6
    Denzel Washington will probably be nominated for his performance in
  4. Nov 2, 2012
    6
    This movie should be called The Bottle Jockey or something that more accurately denotes its central theme i.e, an alcoholic airline captain having is coming to Jesus moment. The movie is 140 minutes long: 10 minutes of setup; 15 minutes or so of pretty good flying scenes-followed by 110 minutes of watching Denzel Washington
  5. Nov 4, 2012
    5
    From the previews this looks like the nail-biting experience of a plane crash. That's pretty true
  6. Nov 14, 2012
    5
    Luckily there is a great nude scene. Otherwise a very bland film about not much. Tries to be dark and troubling, but comes off as shallow and uninteresting. Nudity is worth a Netflix rental, but not full price at the theater. If I were Denzel I'd fire my agent.
  7. Dec 19, 2012
    4
    The professional critics were far too generous to this film. Sure, Denzel does a nice job portraying the drunk pilot, but his story is simply tedious. I wasn't in the mood to watch a saga of an alcoholic pilot in denial. It's not an ambitious story in the least. Even John Goodman's character is wasted. He's terrific in his first scene, but then he becomes a caricature of himself in theThe professional critics were far too generous to this film. Sure, Denzel does a nice job portraying the drunk pilot, but his story is simply tedious. I wasn't in the mood to watch a saga of an alcoholic pilot in denial. It's not an ambitious story in the least. Even John Goodman's character is wasted. He's terrific in his first scene, but then he becomes a caricature of himself in the coke sequence. The actors who save the film are Kelly Reilly (as Nicole) and Nadine Velazquez (from the League). Expand
  8. Jan 19, 2013
    6
    Flight's first 30 minutes is riveting with the flight sequence but then levels off into some addiction drama.The movie soars in the beginning but begins to flat line as the movie progresses and eventually falls into a Hollywood style ending.
  9. Feb 10, 2013
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. As long as you go into it accepting that airplanes and piloting are a plot devise, and you want a tale of alcoholism and the struggle of addiction as the actual theme then it may be enjoyable. The trailer is more entertaining than the movie. Expand
  10. Dec 9, 2012
    6
    A well acted, well directed movie with quite a few story problems. As usual Denzel chews up the screen and is worth the price of admission alone. The crash at the beginning of the film is fantastically shot, super intense, and jarring. Most of the story problems come from the relationships or lack there of throughout the movie. We are given little back story in some cases, while newA well acted, well directed movie with quite a few story problems. As usual Denzel chews up the screen and is worth the price of admission alone. The crash at the beginning of the film is fantastically shot, super intense, and jarring. Most of the story problems come from the relationships or lack there of throughout the movie. We are given little back story in some cases, while new relationships are severely under developed and quite unbelievable. So while I do feel like we become invested in our main character and are invested in seeing him change his life, the emotional payoff is a little underwhelming because we care little if any about anyone else in this film. Another liked it didn't love it Denzel film to add to a pretty long list. Expand
  11. Dec 8, 2012
    6
    The film is completely carried by Washington. However in a way it is also ruined by him. His amazing performance exposes the rest if the film as lackluster, and the 2 hour 18 minute run time felt very unnecessary. I can think of two plot points that had no effect on the story. Still engaging and worth a DVD viewing due to Denzel.
  12. CBN
    Nov 9, 2012
    5
    Worth seeing for Denzel's performance and the opening 30 minutes but the rest of the film, aside from a few tense moments, falls flat. Good direction, great acting but the pace of the film left alot to be desired. Made the same point with the main character over and over again.
  13. Nov 26, 2012
    5
    I went into this movie knowing full well what I was getting myself into, a character study on alcoholism with a flashy planecrash to draw in the public audience. The movie had potential, but it felt like a movie Columbia Pictures made just to fill the seats. Even as someone with a drinking problem, I couldn't identify or empathize with the protagonist. A drama without the script andI went into this movie knowing full well what I was getting myself into, a character study on alcoholism with a flashy planecrash to draw in the public audience. The movie had potential, but it felt like a movie Columbia Pictures made just to fill the seats. Even as someone with a drinking problem, I couldn't identify or empathize with the protagonist. A drama without the script and emotions to back it up. But that crash was pretty sweet... Expand
  14. Dec 4, 2012
    5
    In the previews we've all seen that Washington makes a miraculous flight recovery to save his doomed airplane. The problem for me with this film is that it continues to tell me over and over again and display situations redundantly that demonstrate that our hero has a problem. OK; I get it. Once you do get it, there's not a lot more to this film. Washington, for all of his abilites, cannotIn the previews we've all seen that Washington makes a miraculous flight recovery to save his doomed airplane. The problem for me with this film is that it continues to tell me over and over again and display situations redundantly that demonstrate that our hero has a problem. OK; I get it. Once you do get it, there's not a lot more to this film. Washington, for all of his abilites, cannot overcome his personal problems and in this movie, he has "so many chances". However, Washington's performance is worthy. Expand
  15. Jan 9, 2013
    6
    I enjoyed everything about this movie. A very powerful and dramatic film that keeps the audience aware the whole time. Opens with a great crash scene and finishes with a perfect ending. Washington at his best.
  16. Apr 17, 2015
    6
    Flight boasts a powerhouse central performance from Washington as a pilot who averts disaster despite being an alcoholic, but the rambling plot line involving his personal life dilutes the power of the story at its heart. Apart from Washington, Goodman, Cheadle and Greenwood it's really hard to care about the rest of the characters who add nothing to the story and seem to be there mainlyFlight boasts a powerhouse central performance from Washington as a pilot who averts disaster despite being an alcoholic, but the rambling plot line involving his personal life dilutes the power of the story at its heart. Apart from Washington, Goodman, Cheadle and Greenwood it's really hard to care about the rest of the characters who add nothing to the story and seem to be there mainly for padding. A brilliant opening and a redemptive finale is padded out with a very weak mid section. Expand
  17. Jun 10, 2013
    6
    Washington and his supporting cast are enjoyable and the first 40 mins are good (up until after the crash) and then it just sorts of level off. It gets a little interesting at parts through out but never really gets to the potential that it was capable of reaching. Sort of a disappointment really because Flight easily could have been the best drama of the year.
  18. Sep 2, 2014
    6
    Robert Zemeckis is one of the best under-the-radar directors out of the last thirty years. He can tell a mindful story with such ease--granted he receives immense help from his on-screen counterparts. Fairly unknown actress, Kelly Reilly, is actually the finest part of the film.
  19. Aug 3, 2013
    6
    The movie opens with an intense scene, but then dwindles down into something far less intriguing, addiction. Not that that is a problem, but since the script could have been much sharper, smarter, and shorter, it leaves you somewhat disappointed. For what it was though, it was decent.
  20. Mar 22, 2013
    6
    The Flight is descent. It's first minutes have tension, sadness. The story continues, and gets a bit confusing. However, don't let that avoid the movie. While confusing at times, it's an emotional and an enjoyable movie, that will keep you satisfied. Also, the ending is terrific.
  21. Dec 26, 2012
    6
    A little long and really slows down when into enters Hollywood common ground with the unnecessary romance subplot. It also went the conventional uplifting route, abandoning the complexities at the beginning of the film. Not to say it's at all bad, just disappointing considering the thrilling and daring first act and the always captivating Denzel Washington.
  22. Mar 4, 2013
    4
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. whatever else may be wrong with this film it certainly has nothing to do with Denzel Washington's committed and convincing portrayal of an alcoholic pilot under suspicion for negligence after the aircraft he was piloting crash lands killing six people on board. The crash sequence is extremely well handled wringing out maximum tension. Once grounded, though, the screenplay introduces us to sundry supporting characters that tend to make the story seem very disjointed. Each scene seems to feel like a tiny vignette filling in the background detail of his life which holds little real interest.. The Introduction of drug user Kelly Reilly also doesn't really add the necessary spark. In fact her main purpose is to show that her road to recovery is a lot quicker than the path Denzel's character chooses. The final outcome is somewhat predictable, but before the cloying reunion scenes with the estranged son, there is a really good key scene where bye Denzel is interrogated by a wonderfully understated Melissa Leo. Here the film really packs a punch, but for most of it's excesive running time Flight just doesn't take off. Expand
  23. Jan 30, 2013
    4
    After dabbling in the world of creepy pseudo-realistic motion capture with Beowulf, The Polar Express and A Christmas Carol, Robert Zemeckis returns to the land of the living with the tonally muddled, Oscar-ripe drab-drama Flight.

    Read the full review here:
    http://theframeloop.com/2013/01/30/reviewflight/
  24. Aug 26, 2014
    6
    Flight is a well made but somewhat uninvolving drama. It starts off with a pointless nude scene that never seems to end. Shortly after however is possibly one of the tensest scenes in movie history. The plane plunging to the ground as seen through the cockpit, and passengers hanging upside down in peril create some pretty terrifying moments. After the plane is down though the movieFlight is a well made but somewhat uninvolving drama. It starts off with a pointless nude scene that never seems to end. Shortly after however is possibly one of the tensest scenes in movie history. The plane plunging to the ground as seen through the cockpit, and passengers hanging upside down in peril create some pretty terrifying moments. After the plane is down though the movie just becomes... well, boring. Sure, the acting is solid, and you really root for Whip to pull himself together, but it comes off as merely meh. It could have been tense and suspenseful, but it's mostly just unimpressive melodrama. You're never really drawn in. It's convincing, but not really much else. Expand
  25. Apr 12, 2013
    6
    While many have complained about the heavy handedness and self-righteousness of the movies general theme (or great moral lesson) there is no escaping that it is still well acted by it's grade-a class of actors including Denzel Washington, Don Cheadle, Kelly Reilly and the incorrigible John Goodman who even at a brief 10 minutes of total screen time is by far the most memorable sideWhile many have complained about the heavy handedness and self-righteousness of the movies general theme (or great moral lesson) there is no escaping that it is still well acted by it's grade-a class of actors including Denzel Washington, Don Cheadle, Kelly Reilly and the incorrigible John Goodman who even at a brief 10 minutes of total screen time is by far the most memorable side character of the film. Yes, in parts, the movie plays like a triple A recruiting tool for Alcoholics Anonymous. That isn't to say that the movie is bad. As a viewer, I realized I had been feeling impassioned by characters who spent no more than 10 minutes in front of the camera (one of them making her appearance as a topless flight attendant in a skinny red thong). However trite or mundane these characters are introduced, it only takes a few key scenes to be locked into their own web of misfortune, while feeling the deep seeded morose of Washington's Whip Whitiker. In the end, giving it time and consideration, the movie is far from trite and as moving as Washington's past performances. Not an outstanding movie (and maybe even one that could very well crawl under your skin sometimes), it's not all bad. Given a chance, there'll be moments when it surprises you. **3 out of 5 stars** Collapse
  26. May 18, 2013
    6
    The end scene is embarrassment to the clever build-up and solid role played by Denzel Washington. What a disappointing way waste a good story that had potential for so much more.
  27. Mar 11, 2013
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Overall, Denzel Washington gives a good performance for a character that is not in the one bit likable. As character stories go, Whip never learns from his mistakes, but that's kind of the point of the character development. Because his addiction is so deep, his life revolves around alcohol and it's been his only escape from all his failures as a husband and father, and his failures as a noble and good person. The movie is ok, but spends too much time playing around with the idea of the plane crash and everything that happens as "an act of God," when in reality everything happens for a reason. But the whole time, Whip never learns. I guess that's the point of the movie. In that case, the message is flawed and difficult to really enjoy. Expand
  28. Apr 1, 2013
    6
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. IN MY OPINION **MAY CONTAIN SPOIILERS** by CtheTav This film is not what it seems. I expected to see some kind of action epic based on a plane with a drunken pilot trying to save the day. Apparently the trailers lied. What I saw was a story of a man battling addiction and the overarching story of the culture to blame and compensate that society has become used to. Denzel Washington plays the part of an alcoholic pilot struggling to sober up for an enquiry in to the crash seen in the films trailer. The story is suitably dark and shows the lengths people will go to cover their own asses and place the blame somewhere else without going too far i.e. full blown murder conspiracy. Robert Zermeckis seems to get a lot out of Washington who gives possibly his best performance to date and the film manages to tell the story over a longer time frame without resorting to narration which is always a plus in my opinion. The romance in the film seemed to drag on and I felt it didn't really add to the film and took away from the story. I liked the overall disturbing feeling that the film gives off after watching which is a sure fire sign of some kind of emotional investment. Rating 6 out of 10 A fairly thought provoking experience with rather unnecessary portions Expand
  29. Apr 24, 2013
    6
    Flight stars Denzel Washington as Whip Whitaker, a pilot who can fly a passenger jet through the eye of a needle even though he's downed enough alcohol to put Haystacks Calhoun on his keester.

    Whitaker is no stranger to other mind-altering substances. He apparently can drink ten gallons of 150 proof hooch, fall asleep, then get himself back on his feet by snorting several lines of
    Flight stars Denzel Washington as Whip Whitaker, a pilot who can fly a passenger jet through the eye of a needle even though he's downed enough alcohol to put Haystacks Calhoun on his keester.

    Whitaker is no stranger to other mind-altering substances. He apparently can drink ten gallons of 150 proof hooch, fall asleep, then get himself back on his feet by snorting several lines of cocaine. And with all those drugs swirling around in his liver, he can expertly maneuver a disabled airplane upside-down (to be clear, it's the airplane that's upside-down. Although the Whipster could likely fly it standing on his head). What a stud!

    However this is a pretty good movie. You'll really enjoy it if you first dispose of your jaded negativity.
    Expand
  30. Jul 17, 2013
    4
    I liked watching the movie (good performance, interesting story,...) but i was disappointed with the morale. Too much of "i am a sinner and i deserve to be punished" for me...
  31. Dec 11, 2013
    6
    My issue with this movie is how terribly anticlimactic it was. Several times you feel build up but it just get's squandered away.
    I feel like it was such a good story line to start with but slowly deteriorates, and becomes another hallmark movie.
    On a positive note it was interesting to watch, but I felt no real resolve at the end of the film, and I felt like it was just a little too
    My issue with this movie is how terribly anticlimactic it was. Several times you feel build up but it just get's squandered away.
    I feel like it was such a good story line to start with but slowly deteriorates, and becomes another hallmark movie.
    On a positive note it was interesting to watch, but I felt no real resolve at the end of the film, and I felt like it was just a little too stereotypical.
    It could've been timeless easily, but instead they chose things to go into like him meeting a girl who might I say in my opinion is and was a terrible actor, emphasize it to the point that it's "cheesily" dramatic. I wanted to roll my eyes into the back of my head. Yet another disappointment with some of the way over dramatic and in style over dramatized but lacking meaning religious references, it's incomplete to me.
    Throughout the movie Denzel does a spectacular job, the base story itself is compelling, but gets muddied up and trampled on throughout the film.
    If you're not into movies that end in and non-deep and hallmark way, with a personal meaning and motivating cause, this isn't the best movie for you.
    Cinematically, decently set up. I'd give it a 6.
    Expand
Metascore
76

Generally favorable reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 40
  2. Negative: 0 out of 40
  1. Reviewed by: Chris Hewitt (1)
    Jan 28, 2013
    80
    A welcome return to live-action filmmaking for Zemeckis, who hasn't lost his knack for a brilliant shot or for extracting great performances. It may not exactly be a first-class experience throughout, but there's nothing wrong with premium economy.
  2. Reviewed by: David Denby
    Nov 7, 2012
    80
    We get tired of watching Whip fail, and we're caught between dismayed pity and a longing to see him punished. Only a great actor could have pulled off this balancing act. [12 Nov. 2012, p.94]
  3. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Nov 4, 2012
    75
    It may not be frivolously engaging but it is compelling.