Movie Review: United 93
Jennifer and I just got back from seeing United 93. I’m not normally an opening weekend movie goer. Heck, I’m not typically a movie goer, period. But this is different. America has forgotten what that morning was like, and this movie brings it back. In real time.
My first thought going into it was I hope I don’t end up weeping like I did when I saw Passion. I didn’t. I don’t think I came close, but I can’t say the same for other movie goers. It brings out many of the emotions we felt that day, but the distance of time and events makes them as old, dusty relics from a closet in the trunk. We look, we remember, and we know the emotions, but they’ve faded.
This is not entertainment. This is not docudrama. It is as accurate a portrayal of their actions as we can make. This is like making a movie about Pearl Harbor – you can make a historical movie, like Tora! Tora! Tora!, or a romance, one like Pearl Harbor, from a few years ago. This is a historical portrayal, done in almost nearly real time.
And done tastefully, too. The final crash is not shown. The screen goes black, just as the cockpit view fills with the Shanksville field. You feel the confusion of the air traffic controllers, as well as the despair of the passengers as they call their relatives. It moves you, but the movement depends on the hardness of your heart towards the events of the day. Pink Team will cast their aspersions, Grey Team will have their inner doubts and their sadness. But it is definitely an emotional movie.
I recommend it, but be prepared to deal with the emotions it can bring up. The dominant one for me was doubt. I wonder if, put in the same position, I could ever do what they did.
By God, I can.