You are on page 1of 5

May 1

Jake May

Professor Collins

ENGL 1301

15 February 2017


With always having an interest for aviation, when I saw the trailer for Sully it caught my

attention. This movie retells the tragic yet heroic events of the Hudson River crashing back in

2009. Having some knowledge on the storyline I knew this had the potential to be excellent. I

will be reviewing the movie Sully directed by Clint Eastwood, based on techniques Eastwood

used to enhance the viewing experience, how Tom Hanks performed in the lead role, and how

accurately depicted the movie was to the true events, to determine if I would recommend this

film to my friends.

Throughout the film Eastwood used quality camera work to enhance the overall viewing

experience. One scene in particular resonated with me; the water landing scene. Knowing the

importance of that scene, the pressure was on Eastwood to deliver. According to Slash Film,

Eastwood used a special camera called IMAX Alexa 65; in fact this is the same camera used

throughout the film, but it was specifically tailored for this one scene. With the director being a

former helicopter pilot, he had a realistic idea of what he wanted from the scene.

Correspondingly, the production team purchased two retired A320s for the filming of the scene.

The A320 was the same model aircraft as the one that crashed that day on the Hudson River. As a

result of using two authentic airliners, the true-to-life aspect really shows through this attention
May 2

to detail. Along with the overhead shot of the water landing using a helicopter, the IMAX Alexa

65, and the authentic props, this scene is one to look forward to. Besides the main crashing

scene, Eastwood keeps this film surprisingly internal. With this film being based on six minutes

of action, that only focuses the importance on the crashing scene. Furthermore, it gives credit to

Eastwood on his work building up suspense and developing the storyline appropriately, to keep

the audience intrigued.

I was excited to see this film not only because Clint Eastwood directed it, but Tom Hanks

was leading. I was intrigued to see how Hanks would perform even though he is no stranger to

playing characters that are shadowed by doubt and hardship. Prior to filming, Eastwood had

Hanks meet with Captain Sullenberger, the man who successfully landed the aircraft that day, to

discuss how he reacted during and after the crash. Hanks does a tremendous job in Sullenberger's

shoes. Speaking from experience being around pilots, the way he held himself and the attention

to detail he possessed as a pilot in this film made his presence felt. These small additions of

detail include scenes shot in the cockpit, where every command and switch pushed by the crew

had a purpose. As a matter of fact, Eastwood had Hanks and his co-pilot practice on an Airbus

A320 simulator as claimed by He had them fly the exact route that Captain

Sullenberger flew the day of the crash. Claimed by People Movies, this itself gave both Hanks

and his co-pilot Eckhart an idea of how urgent the situation was and how to react appropriately

as pilots. With Hanks performance in this film I would not be surprised to see him receive

another acting nomination, as it shows he has garnered a reputation as one of the hardest working

and respected actors in recent memory.

According to "The New 'Sully' Movie: How Accurate?" Sully was as authentic as a movie

could be to the true events. Eastwood organized Captain Sullenberger to meet with Tom Hanks to
May 3

smooth out any hesitancy to ensure Sully turned out as authentic as possible. Sullenberger

became heavily involved in the filming and promoting of this film. Alongside that, the struggles

that occurred for Sullenberger post-crash, they line up almost perfectly to the true grapples he

had experienced. These included the side-effects of the Post-Traumatic-Stress-Disorder (PTSD)

he suffered, which involved insomnia, flashbacks, and high blood pressure. Mentioned

previously these traits throughout the film are accurately illustrated with Eastwood's use of

flashbacks and depiction of family issues he experienced as a result of the PTSD. The story

being told came from my experiences and reflects the many challenges that I faced and

successfully overcame both during and after the flight, Sullenberger stated to Laura Itallano of

the New York Post. With doing my own background work after seeing the film, everything about

the film, the props, acting, personality traits, all line up to resemble the true-to-life feeling the

production team had been working vigorously to achieve. In addition to that another piece of

information I discovered was that Eastwood hired rescue workers who helped that day at the

Hudson to work in scenes post-crash. As stated in The Wrap, an individual with knowledge of the

project informed news outlets that they worked to recreate the events of the crashing. The

investigation into Sullenberger and his flight crew's actions on board that day had to hold

importance in this film, especially a movie only being based on six minutes of action. Despite

that, to know what really happened with the National Transportation Safety Boards investigation

is hard telling. Along with the investigation notes and analysis being confidential, that part of the

film will never be truly known.

I certainly do not regret seeing this film after watching and investigating all of the effort

behind the scenes that made this a masterpiece. Credit goes to Eastwood and his production team

as they did an outstanding job behind the camera, with the portrayal of important figures and the
May 4

general authenticity of this film. The true-to-life attributes displayed pulled the audience in, and

the post-crash suspense kept the audience on their toes. After considering all factors investigated,

I would not hesitate one bit to check out this film. My personal rating of this film would be eight

out of ten.
May 5

Works Cited

Anderton, Ethan, "Clint Eastwood's 'Sully' will be First Film Shot Almost Completely with

IMAX Cameras" Film, 25 Apr. 2016,

Accessed 16 Feb 2017.

Auxier, Eric, "The New 'Sully' Movie: How Accurate." Airways, 28 Aug, 2016, Accessed 16 Feb.


Fecteau, Jessica "First Look! Tom Hanks Becomes Hero Pilot Sully in Clint Eastwood Drama."

People Movies, 29 Jun, 2016,

sully/. Accessed 17 Feb. 2017.

Itallano, Laura "Movie reveals torment Sully faced after Hudson miracle." New York Post, July


hudson-miracle/. Accessed 16 Feb. 2017.

Verhoeven, Beatrice, " 'Sully' Hired Actual Miracle on the Hudson Rescuers." The Wrap, 8 Sept,


Accessed 16 Feb. 2017.