1998 restoration version
"For me, almost everything that is called mise en scene is a big joke. In the cinema, there are very few people who are really metteurs-en-scene; there are very few who have ever had the opportunity to direct. The only mise en scene of real importance is practiced in the editing."
Watched this as part of the 2nd Letterboxd Festival. Flawed, but well worth a watch.
Certainly excellent from a technical viewpoint, with immaculate cinematography. The use of static framing gives the camera a curious detachment from the events. Frames often comprise of single subjects (even when they are around other people), effectively conveying their social isolation. The acting is also incredibly - almost frighteningly - committed.
It's narrative content, however, is much more problematic. My biggest issue is that the…
Flight starts brilliantly, with slightly excessive but welcoming bravado. The crash sequence is terrifically constructed: clear, tense and precise. Everything starts falling apart once Denzel leaves the hospital, as it exhausts every possible cliché in a calculated attempt to evoke an emotional response. Everything wrong is encapsulated in the throw-the-bottle-against-the-wall scene, complete with a freaking thunderstorm. Still, it almost redeemed itself with a surprising turn of events, before deciding ‘naaaaah’ and twisting the knife further with a limp ending. Denzel’s performance is very good though, underrated even. John Goodman is funny as usual, but what the hell does his character add to the film?