Movie #21 2021: Air Force One (1997)

I watched this film on the day that President Joe Biden was inaugurated. It just felt so apt to watch something so ‘’God Bless America’ on that day, and I regret nothing.

Air Force One is an overly dramatised version of what could happen in an alternate reality. (Although after the recent storming of Capitol Hill, it’s probably not as far-fetched as it seemed in 1997.) In short, the movie is based on what happens when the president’s aeroplane (Air Force One) is hijacked by a group of Russian terrorists who have a list of demands. If those demands are not met, they threaten to kill one hostage every 30 minutes on board the plane.

All I can say is: Ford/Close 2028.

What’s so great about Harrison Ford is that when I see him in movies, I don’t think about Indiana Jones or Han Solo even though they’re such iconic characters, and that’s the mark of a great actor. The real MVP though? Glenn Close. What a boss ass bitch. (Gary Oldman is an excellent villain too – take your “overdramatic” remarks and shove ‘em. He’s great.) Perhaps it would be more apt if I went for ‘Close/Ford 2028’ when it comes down to it.

Yes, it’s very over the top and extremely pro-USA… but I had a blast watching this. Do yourself a favour and take it with a pinch of salt; don’t expect the world’s best movie and just enjoy the ride. It’s action-filled, ridiculous, and exciting. Come on, you didn’t expect Citizen Kane, did you? This movie is rooted in pure entertainment, and it doesn’t try to pretend to be something it’s not. What’s so wrong with that?

Air Force One has nineties action movie cheese written all over it, with an obnoxiously melodramatic musical score. Nevertheless, it’s proper blockbuster stuff, with a pretty fun, well-paced script. It didn’t get boring once, actually, and it’s often difficult for me to pay attention constantly for two whole hours, so that’s saying something.

The best part? William H. Macy not having a single line of dialogue for the entire first half, then coming up trumps as the hero of the people. Love you, Frank Gallagher. 

How to summarise this movie succinctly? Crappy CGI, unrealistic plot, overtly pro-American propaganda. Alas, I don’t care: I loved it.

Air Force One is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video in the UK.

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