Captain Sully Sullenberger glided the US Airways into the Hudson and saved all the passengers on Thursday, January 15, 2009. The entire ordeal lasted just two hundred and eight seconds. Strangers want to hug Captain Sullenberger (Tom Hanks), buy him a drink, but he just wants to go home to be with Lorraine (Laura Linney) and his kids. Every time Eastwood and Komarnicki revisit the river landing, they give the audience new information and building action, with more focus on the tense, split-second decisions made by Sullenberger and co-pilot Jeff Skiles (Aaron Eckhart), in a ridiculous but Skiles-accurate mustache).
What is “Sully” Really About
This documentary illustrates the inner conflict with being a patriotic hero. He follows his passion by spending hours in the air but coming home to his family seems very concerned about him. He takes out his frustrations by jogging in New York City in the days following a near-death experience. Sully’s discomfort about appearing on The Late Show With David Letterman is a plot point.
It is intelligently an unfolded drama that makes good use of multiple flashbacks and internal visions to bring the audience not only inside Sully’s head but also to really ‘feel’ the emergency landing rather than just witness it, without disturbing the flow of the film. Eastwood walks audiences through the incident multiple times, from different points of view and camera perspectives. Then he loops back and does it all again, via several computer simulations showing different choices Captain Chesley Sullenberger might have made in landing the plane.