You are on page 1of 6

Assessment 1: Watch the movie Flight and complete the following: a) Describe the issue/story b) Explain why it has

ethical implications c) Describe the ethical theories that may be applied here. d) Apply these theories to the case and assess whether the actions of the characters were ethical and describe what the characters should have done and apply the relevant theories to your resolution whether it is ethical.

Introduction (Summarize the story)Captain William "Whip" Whitaker is a divorced man that no longer living with his spouse and son. Not only that, he is also having an affair with the flight attendant Katerina Trina. A night before flying from Orlando to Atlanta, Whip spends his night drinking and using cocaine with Trina. The next morning, Whip faces confusion at the takeoff as the plane starts to fly uncontrollably. Whip has no choice but to crash the plane and he loses consciousness after the plane crash. Whip awakens and finds himself in an Atlanta hospital with minor injuries. Charlie Anderson a friend of Whip who also the representative of the airlines pilots union claims that Whip heroism saved nearly everyone on board but sadly there were also 6 killed including Trina. Whip encounters Nicole a recovering drug addict while he sneaks out to have a cigarette in the stairwell. Soon, a patient named Mark Mellow joined into their conversation. According to Mark, theres no way to prevent things from happening. To him he was meant to get cancer just as much as the three of them were meant to meet in the stairwell. Whip tells Nicole that he would love to meet her after they are relieved from the hospital. Next morning, Whips friend along with a drug dealer named Harling Mays pick him up and sneak him away from the hospital. Whip hoping to avoid the media by driving to his late fathers farm. When Whip meets Charlie and Hugh Lang who is a lawyer, Hugh explains to Whip saying that NTSB performed a hospital toxicology screen while he was unconscious. Stated that Whip was intoxicated and indicates theres a chance Whip could face criminal because of the positive test on alcohol, drugs and manslaughter. Whip denies and angrily leaves the house and looks for Nicole. He finds her bailing on her lease so he offers to pay for it and let her stay at the farm.

Soon they begin a romantic relationship but it didnt last long as Whip could not control his drinking addiction. Sooner or later, the media found out where is his farmhouse and he has no choice but to leaves intoxicated to his ex-wife and teenage son. They call up the police. Whip begs to stay with Charlie by promising that he wont drink before the upcoming NTSB hearing. To make sure that Whip doesnt get intoxicated, Charlie and Hugh decided to check Whip into a guarded hotel a night before the hearing. The room has only a mini-bar that has nonalcoholic beverages but slowly Whip notices and finds a mini-bar full of alcohols along the open door to the adjoining room. The next morning, Charlie and Hugh find him passed out drunk. They quickly call Harling and ask to bring him cocaine to perk him up. At the hearing, the lead of NTSB investigator reveals the reason of the planes malfunctioning is to be a damaged elevator assembly jackscrew. Not only that, Block point out that there were also two empty alcohol bottles found in the junk bin on the plane and only the flight crew had access to the alcohol. Whip knows these belong to him. Block asks Whip whether he thinks Trina may have been drinking on the job because only Trinas toxicology screen showed alcohol. Whip refuses to tarnish Trinas good name and decided to admit not only that he was flying intoxicated but also at the hearing. Whip serves a minimum five-year sentence but he is glad and did not regret admitting because he finally feels free.

Body (Analyze the problem and issue in the movie) Flight is the story of an airline pilot and it is also a good film about addiction. This film succeeds shown out alcoholism and how it hijacks the life of a highly successful pilot. The main character Whip has a tremendous issue. On the surface he is a "functional alcoholic." Many of his friends describe him as a "heavy drinker" rather than an alcoholic. Whip drinks in an uncontrolled manner. He can't tolerate even the suggestion that he has a problem on the one hand and one the other makes the promise that he will stop and he can stop at any time. He walks out of a meeting when the speaker asks people to raise their hand if they are an alcoholic. There is also a major contrast between Whip and his girlfriend Nicole illustrating that addiction has no socioeconomic boundaries. There were so many scenes in this film that captured the problems of addiction. He gets out of the hospital post crash and goes to the family farm where he proceeds to dump out all of the beer and hard liquor. He dumps out his stash of marijuana. There is the implicit recognition

that somewhere there are toxicology results that he is going to have to deal with. As that part of the plot unfolds, he resumes drinking, smoking marijuana, and snorting cocaine with a vengeance. In one scene he walks out of a liquor store with a case of beer and what appears to be a three liter bottle of vodka. As soon as he gets into the car he is drinking the vodka like water and drives around with an open can of beer. There are several scenes where the interpersonal toll of alcoholism is evident with his potential love interests, his son and ex-wife, and friends and business associates who are rooting for him. The business associates have a common interest in seeing that he is exonerated for any crimes related to substance abuse. This is a compelling film about addiction for families who deal with this problem on a daily basis and for those who do not. It accurately portrays the central problems of addiction and recovery as not just avoiding punishment or making a conscious decision to stop. It is a lot more than that and hopefully that message will be clear from watching this film.

Body (Apply theories and the outcomes)Flight is a powerful movie that shows live endless conversations about morality and dilemma. Drinking and drugs are also the major issues in this movie, as the main character is an alcoholic who frequently resulting in arguing and/or injuries and a secondary character is a drug addict. There is also a nude scene early in the movie, when the main character wakes up in a hotel room with a girlfriend, and language is strong, with uses of foul language. Choice is like an option that enables Whip to fly above not only having extremely unfortunate real world conditions but also above a traditional ethics that pay attention on the consequences of our choices. Claiming that had no choice in such circumstances allows people to feel better. It helps people to feel less responsible and on their consequences. Problem always occurs are self-deceptive and anti-thetical to living an ethical life. In the first two scenes portrays Whip is a man in ruins, to be more exact, a pilot who has break his obligations as a pilot, has lost his trust from the public, who also has ruined any social moral sense. The only thing he holds on to is his own personal morality which is freedom to choose. Whip says: I drink because I choose to. Whips ruined moral sense; on the other hand, Whip is featured on own American Millennial culture. Drinking its like a consequence of a personal choice and that can never be indicated. Drinking cannot be testified as alcoholism as

well. All the negative results including losing love and respect from his son and the breakup of his marriage cannot falls under moral review because dominating ethic of free to choose shown all this as inconsequential and negligible. In the end, Whip chose to recognize his personal as alcoholism. Before Whip enters to the hearing, what is in terms of the issues here arising a moral tribunal, whether he should allow them to think someone else Trina. If morality lies in choice alone, regardless of what is chosen, then clearly he can choose to put the blame on Trina by escaping the sentence to be jailed. However, he doesnt want to defame Trinas good name by giving such a false witness, ended up he choose to fess up. He does by saying Trina didnt drink. I drank that vodka. I was drunk. Im drunk now. In these both cases, he is allow to choose; his choice to get himself free from blame but he refused and take the blame himself satisfies a traditional moral sense that focuses not on the freedom to choose but on the consequences of the action taken. Whip chooses to drink and he does choose to admit he is an alcoholic. Not only that, Whip also chooses to accept his punishment that cause by his own. How many of us, however, would be equally ready to accept this: Whip has the choice by telling lies that known as moral absolutism. For instance, I am right and you are wrong and you do what I say. Because after all, he knows hes the only one could have landed that plane like he did. This falls under Psychological. Proven that everyone is selfish based on the level of selfishness. The scene where Whip goes into the stairwell for a smoke and from there Whip runs into a woman, Nicole who is also there for a smoke. She is a drug addict who the movie recognizes that drugs are doing the choosing for her, that she has lost her own power to choose. In her, people actually realized that ones will can be overpowered, that under certain conditions all of us will break down and that no effort of a personal will to power will resurrect us. Nicole has no choice but to rely on others. She recognizes a social dependence that will empower her personal will. In that same stairwell scene, Whip and Nicole encounter a terminal cancer patient and then treats them and us to a sharp and energetic discussion on death and God.

The cancer patient and the drug dealer have played a good role on addiction in the movie Flight. The cancer patient speaks of the process by cancer of his will and ultimately his life. Is it pure contingency or it is a part of Gods plan? He speaks mockingly but without bitterness of the way God and religion are used by family and friends to mask a meaningless issue that cannot be dealt with. God and religion intervene and somehow sense and even hope appear. This theory makes ethics depend on God, it is also known as supernaturalism (God-based ethics). God is used here the way Nicole uses the needle that accidentally falls out of her purse: the heroin is a shield against the mind digging deeper into the disturbing mess that either personal choices or conditions on the ground have made of us. And so while we are fussing over whether personal choice can triumph over real conditions on the ground and in the air, or whether there are forces outside our personal choice which cannot be resisted, we have heard a voice on a stairwell telling us straight out that what happens to us and to the world just like a plane, that has gone upside down Somehow people around us including ourselves are always in this movie, flying from conditions in the air that disable our personal choice, flying from the accidents of personal choice to some hope that others could help us, flying from the fear that poeple have no choice but are involving serious injury not of purpose but of accident, flying from a random order of everything to God and religion. Flight the movie imitates the way how people are reacting now - it cannot face all the choices it suggests but instead retreats as we all do to a defended position.

Words count: 2065

Blogs & Websites (2010) BBC - Ethics - Introduction to ethics: Supernaturalism. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 21 Mar 2013]. Chip, L. (2013) Movie - Flight (2012). [blog] 18th February 2013, Available at: [Accessed: 20 Mar 2013]. Cline, A. (2013) Einstein Quotes on Ethics & Morality: Humans, not Gods, Define Morality. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 21 Mar 2013]. (2012) "Flight" on [online] Available at: [Accessed: 28 Mar 2013]. (n.d.) Ethics. [online] Available at: [Accessed: 30 Mar 2013]. Withers, J. (2007) What Are the Ethical Issuses in the Movie "Analyze That?". [online] Available at: [Accessed: 31 Mar 2013].