Review: Gerard Butler continues to deliver with 'Plane'
Posted Tuesday, March 28, 2023 at 4:31 PM Central
Last updated Tuesday, March 28, 2023 at 4:32 PM Central
by John Couture
I have a guilty pleasure. When I want to check out and watch a mindless action film, I usually find something starring Gerard Butler. I can never turn off any of the three Fallen films.
So, I was rather tickled to be given the opportunity to review yet another Gerard Butler action film. If anyone can give Liam Neeson a run for his money as King of the Old Dude Action genre, it's Gerard Butler.
Perhaps setting up a whole slew of one-word action vehicle hits Plane takes place on an airplane, but that's only the beginning. An emergency landing is just the start though as survival proves to be tougher than one might imagine after you survive a plane crash. Think of it, "Bus" which could be a remake of Speed or "Boat" which would totally be a take on Speed 2. Hmm, it's too bad they didn't keep making Speed movies.
In the white-knuckle action movie PLANE, pilot Brodie Torrance (Gerard Butler) saves his passengers from a lightning strike by making a risky landing on a war-torn island - only to find that surviving the landing was just the beginning. When most of the passengers are taken hostage by dangerous rebels, the only person Torrance can count on for help is Louis Gaspare (Mike Colter), an accused murderer who was being transported by the FBI. In order to rescue the passengers, Torrance will need Gaspare's help, and will learn there's more to Gaspare than meets the eye.
What starts out as a pretty straight-forward action film where you think the killer inmate is going to be the bad guy gets turned on its head pretty quickly when Brodie and Gaspare (Mike Colter's character) need to work together to save the plane's passengers. This is a good moment to dwell on Colter's performance.
Having mostly been in TV series that I didn't follow, I wasn't immediately familiar with Colter's work, but man he is dialed in for Plane. His countenance is such that he's able to convey the brooding aspect of a prisoner in chains as well as the joy of release that comes with his role in helping to save the passengers.
This is a rather complex detail that you normally wouldn't expect to find in other films of this ilk. It is also the one thing that makes Plane more memorable than it deserves to be. That's not to take anything from Butler's performance, but it's certainly something that helps to elevate Plane from its peers.
But the real star is of course Gerard Butler and he does not disappoint. This is an actor who is not afraid to put his body on the line for his craft. As you'll see in the little bonus videos above and below, he's a consummate professional who drew actual blood during a take.
Like the pro that he is, not only does he simply roll with it, but his bloody temple is with him for the rest of the movie. Now, that is definitely taking one for the team.
In terms of action, some of the arcs are a bit repetitive and obvious, but it doesn't ruin an otherwise good time. Would I have liked to have seen a more original script after the crash, sure, but again, he's my guilty pleasure, so I didn't mind it.
If you've seen any Gerard Butler action film then the film plays out predictably, but that's part of the charm. In today's film landscape, I'm much more likely to spend my precious time watching films that comfort me rather than ones that put me on edge.
Don't get me wrong, a good messed-up film is always appreciated, but when I just want to relax and turn my brain off, there's nothing quite like watching Gerard Butler kick some bad guy butt.
Plane is available on 4K UHD, Blu-ray and DVD.