I have attempted to review this without spoiling some elements and did not manage to. There is not much to this movie and I will have to spoil to make my point. I apologize in advance. But I see no other way. You have been warned. Read this at your own risk.
Oh dear. With all the high praise on this drama and acting from Denzel Washington I was expecting so much more. What I got was incredibly predictable and even more very insulting. We get introduced to a truly despicable character. Never is it really explored or explained why he is that way. There is no real attempt to make this character likable. Or why we should care.
And then suddenly at the end Whip Withaker sees the light. The man who has been lying throughout the movie suddenly can't lie anymore. Because it was too much. Putting him in prison and also losing his license to fly a plane forever. And as much as I want to believe in people trying to do the right thing as much as possible a man like this would not out of the blue confess and put himself in an even worse situation. Clearly there is a moral to this film that I simply have trouble accepting. I get it addiction is bad and religion can save you. Guess what. In real life things aren't as simple. People aren't that simple. If someone has denied being an alcoholic and put people's lives in danger every day he was flying what makes you think he has trouble putting blame or guilt on another person who BTW is very much dead and not able to defend herself. Am I to believe that this is the moment someone has a change of heart. Even when right before the hearing he has drank alcohol like there is no tomorrow. Let us get real here people. Such a person does not have a conscience. He is one of the so many lost and doomed that are beyond saving. I know many religious people want to make you believe otherwise. But sorry I am not falling for this. And you should not either. Denzel is competent but not nearly as impressive or convincing as people claim it. This movie has a a social and religious agenda that I simply don't agree with. And it destroyed any sincerity that this film desperately needed. I can't recommend this one.