I despise Nicholas Cage, with a passion, I only watched the remake of “The Wicker Man” to watch him get ceremonially torched. I will say he was ok in “Con Air” and “8mm” as his emotionless acting suited the roles, but now he appears to have made a career in being like a plank of wood on screen and looking increasingly like a potato.
Sadly he wasn’t the worst thing in this movie.
Ray Steel (Cage) is just your every day pilot, “called” in to work on his birthday, to find his daughter, Chloe, waiting for him there as she has come to visit from out of state. She sees Ray flirting with one of the flight attendance and very quickly puts two and two together, telling him that she doesn’t blame him for straying as his wife and her mother has “found” God, to such an extent that she is driving the whole family away. Ray plods off to get ready for the flight and Chloe meets a reporter who has covered a recent tsunami, Buck. They get chatting and of course there is a spark…but wait! He’s getting on Daddies plane. Just as he is saying his farewell to Chloe, one of the airport staff drifts by and asks Chloe to pass on U2 tickets to her Dad, they are for a gig in London….wow he planned this. She scrawls something on the envelope and asks Buck to give the tickets to her father.
Buck, who is apparently allowed to wander in to the cockpit hands the envelope to Ray. There is some character build up between Chloe, her mother and her little brother and she ends up taking he brother to the mall, leaving her born again Christian mother at home. Mean while the plane has taken off and Ray sneaks off to show the tickets to the flight attendant that he was flirting with earlier…now I’m not sure because Cage’s facial expression never changes through out the film, but I think it dawns on him that Chloe has worked out that he wasn’t just called in to work. We are introduced to a few of the people on the plane…some of them showing their sinful behaviour, such as gambling. Honestly at this point there is not one likeable character in this film. Where the directors and script writers have desperately tried to do some characterisation, there is nothing likeable about anyone, and their background stories are so vacuous that it’s difficult to build up and form of bond with them.
Suddenly… the plane starts to judder, at the same time, Chloe is hugging her little brother in the mall, when he, and many others around them, just disappear…poof! The same happens on the plane, with some passengers disappearing, leaving behind all their worldly belongings.
Back on the ground, Chloe goes in search of her brother (even though she literally witnessed him disappear), as cars come flying at her, light air crafts fall out the sky and the people left behind go crazy. Back on the plane, havoc ensues as mothers search for their missing children. Ray hurries back to the cock pit to find his copilot has disappeared as well. There is no contact with the ground, and poor old Ray can’t get a mobile signal…who said you shouldn’t use mobile phones in the air.
As the frantic behaviour on land and in air continues, Chloe seems to end up in a hospital. In what I would say is probably the most idiotic break in….who breaks a floor level windows and then climbs over the glass? Honestly! She could have at least moved the majority of the glass to one side with her shoe before climbing through…or better yet found a door to smash. She starts looking for her brother in the new mother ward, obviously, probably the first place I would go to, only to find all the babies gone. One mother remains and she alludes to the fact that this is happening all over the earth.
In the air, Ray comes across another plane, and as he desperately tries to get hold of the pilots, we as the audience see that they have both disappeared. What ever will Ray do now? At the last moment he pulls the plane up avoiding a collision, but it clips the wing! Now I know what you are thinking…who would be the perfect person to help old Ray out in this situation? Obviously Buck the reporter. Buck reports to Ray that there is fuel coming out of the wing….and it’s on fire…but that’s ok as they are flying away from it. Here all logic goes out of the window. So apparently it’s just forgotten that a) there are procedures to follow if this sort of thing happens and b) there is an auxiliary pump which will move fuel from one engine for occasions where the engine fails or starts to leak. Instead Ray just watches the fuel drop down and decicides that the best thing to do would be to turn back.
Ray is starting to understand these disappearances as he realises all the people who have disappeared were all Christian’s…yes this is a rapture film. Although no one ever takes the time to explain full what the rapture is, expecting it’s audience to fully understand what and why this has happened…
The audience also finally finds out what Chloe wrote on the envelope…”This is the saddest day of my life”…watching this film, it’s also the saddest day of my life Chloe…I am right there with you.
Chloe finally makes her way home only to find her mother has also disappeared leaving just her jewellery in the shower, but only after she has had her hand bag stolen and sees a series of people holding clothes of people who have disappeared. She then listens to a voicemail on her mothers phone (in a format that no iPhone has ever seen) of the moment her father is trying to get the plane with out pilots to move. Thinking that her father is dead and her mother and brother have vanished she wanders aimlessly and ends up on the top of a bridge, speaking to her mother while looking at the sky, just then… conveniently although not for the viewer, her phone rings and Buck is there to tell her that Ray is still alive and hands him the phone. Ray has been trying to find an airport to land the plane, but no one has room due to all the grounded planes. Ray explains his predicament to Chloe and she starts to formulate a plan. To cut a very long and arduous story short, they finally remember that American motorways are straight so that they can be used for runways if needed…
Vaguely happy ending, after a long and drawn out landing, everyone left gets off the plane and Chloe is reunited with Buck and potato face, who doesn’t look happy that he’s manage to land the plane, save the people who are left and find his daughter. He just looks on like he has cotton wool stuck in his top lip.
But what happens next…no one knows and I’m not sure I really cared.
There are some other minor plot lines going on, and honestly the best one is between the two of the passengers on the plane, but I don’t want to ruin the best part of this dreadful film for anyone who might wish to watch it.
In the description of this film, it is said that it is “full of suspense, Ominous”, but I have had more suspenseful and ominous breakfast cereals. The best acting in this is probably from Cage’s wig.
This is filmed like one of those straight to TV sci-fi movies, with a touch of true movie magic thrown in…at one point I was waiting for, this has been based on a true story, to crop up, I’m really hoping you know the types of film I mean here.
Don’t waste your time on this dreary and outright ludicrous film.