Sully review: Clint Eastwood's latest proves that any story can be a good movie
As a director, Clint Eastwood has brought some incredibly unusual stories to life. As a restrained, efficient and methodical filmmaker, his directorial talent has been clear to see in almost any movie he's made. And in Sully, it all shines through.
The story that Sully narrates was absolutely inescapable news in 2009. A commercial plane was forced to make an emergency landing in the Hudson River, just minutes after takeoff from LaGuardia airport.
And somehow, miraculously, all 155 people on board survived.
Suddenly, overnight, Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger became a hero.
But what follows his becoming a hero is a the wrath of an investigation team that seems very hell bent on showing him that he made an error that endangered the lives of his passengers recklessly. That he could have turned the plane around and landed it safely on one of the many runways in New York.
But even though the investigation team comes across as the villains, much of the movie revolves around Sully struggling with his own demons. When he begins to doubt his decision to turn the Hudson into a runway, so do you.
We also get to see the crash from three different perspectives that look scarily realistic (photographs shown during the credits prove that).
In a way, the movie is partly also a tribute to 'New York's finest' in many ways. So it's quite fitting that Sully arrived near the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. An observation made by one of Sully's colleagues in the movie nails it: "New York deserves a happy ending, especially one involving planes."
Tom Hanks is undoubtedly one of Hollywood's finest. He lends gravitas to his Sully, and adds so much depth to an introverted man whose tossed into the limelight - a common issue in this modern digital age.
But there's one lesson to learn here: travel and Tom Hanks do not go well together. Just think Apollo 13, The Terminal or Cast Away.
Clint Eastwood's Sully is not a perfect film, but it comes close to being a great one.