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Sully Miracle On The Hudson review: Clint Eastwood directs Tom Hanks and Aaron Eckhart in this real-life drama.

Sully Miracle On The Hudson review, Jazmine Sky Bradley, November 2016.

Sully Miracle On The Hudson review

While perhaps best known for playing the atypical ‘tough guy’ in classics such as The Good, the Bad and the Ugly and Dirty Harry, when Clint Eastwood sits in the directors chair he likes to focus on the ‘American hero’ – think Million Dollar Baby, Flags of Our Fathers, American Sniper. His latest release, Sully, is no different, with its story celebrating Chesley ‘Sully’ Sullenberger, the American pilot who crash-landed a passenger jet into New York’s Hudson River and lived to tell the tale.

15th January 2009 started out as any other day for Sully (Tom Hanks) and co-pilot Jeff Skiles (Aaron Eckhart), setting out from La Guardia airport to North Carolina. However, within minutes of setting off, Sully reports back to air traffic control after the plane is hit by a large flock of birds, blowing out both engines. What to do? Return to La Guardia, turn towards New Jersey, or find somewhere safe to land? Losing power and height at a dramatic speed, Sully realises there’s only one option: the Hudson.

Sully Miracle On The Hudson review

Eastwood and screenwriter Todd Komarnicki cleverly open the film with what we presume is a recounting of the event, but turns out to be a terrifying nightmare of Sully’s, with him waking in a cold sweat, breathing heavily (I jumped out of my seat). The pair go on to tell the story in a series of flashbacks, cut with the present day, as Sully and Jeff are questioned about the landing and their actions leading up to it. When was the last time Sully had a drink? Ever done drugs? Is he experiencing problems sleeping? Trouble at home? Anything will do to pin the accident on him and not US Airways.

With a story similar to your typical TV movie, what saves Sully from sinking? Of course, the legend that is Tom Hanks. Able to convey the slightest change in emotion through the flick of an expressive eyelid, Hanks lifts Sully above the level of your standard, Channel 5 hero epic normally played on a Sunday afternoon. Eckhart is equally as brilliant, with both working together as an team, akin to the real Sully and Skiles (not forgetting their impressive ‘taches!). Eastwood really can’t help himself and even includes a segment in the credits of the ‘real life’ Sully meeting some of the passengers he saved. Cheesy – with him shown in a low angle shot, Superman-style – but not surprising coming from Clint, Team America’s biggest fan.

Sully Miracle On The Hudson review

Will Sully be winning any Oscars come the 2017 awards season? Probably not, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Hanks’ name appears on the list for Best Actor, as he truly is what brings the drama to life. See it for the story, stay for Tom.

Sully Miracle On The Hudson review, Jazmine Sky Bradley, November 2016.

Sully Miracle On The Hudson review is released across the UK on Friday 2nd December 2016.

  • Sam

    BAD review