starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Scoot McNairy, Maggie Grace and Martin Donovan
written by Javier Gullon
directed by Elliott Lester
Inspired by a true story, Schwarzenegger plays Roman Melnyk, an immigrant laborer in Columbus, Ohio, waiting at Christmas time for his wife and pregnant daughter to arrive by air from Russia. The true events that inspired this story had nothing to do with America, but …
Roman arrives at the airport to meet his family. The flight is late arriving, so he inquires at the airline desk. He’s ushered into a private room for identification and information. What’s happened is that the airplane has crashed and his family is dead along with everyone else on the flight.
Blame is laid at the air traffic controller on duty, Jacob Bonanos (Scoot McNairy). Roman doesn’t want an insurance payout. He doesn’t want to talk to the press, or have a book deal. All he wants is for someone to apologize for killing his wife and daughter. That doesn’t happen. So Roman tracks down Jacob Bunanos, who has changed his identity, changed his city and changed his job for personal security reasons. When Roman finds him, he kills him in his apartment in front of his wife and son.
The film is based on the Uberlingen mid-air collision of July 2002, though the names, places and incidents were changed. In that incident, a Russian Tupolev Tu-154 passenger jet collided with a Boeing 757 cargo jet over Uberlingen, a southern German town.
The official investigation by the German Federal Bureau of Aircraft Accident \investigation identified as the main cause of the collision a number of shortcomings on the part of the Swiss air traffic control service in charge of the sector involved, and also ambiguities in the use of the on-board aircraft collision avoidance system.
A year and a half after the crash, Peter Nielsen, the air traffic controller on duty at the time of the collision, was murdered in an apparent act of revenge by Vitaly Kalovev, a Russian citizen who had lost his wife and two children in the accident.
The film was boring, slow, and not very good, I thought. But I wanted to watch it because I’m interested in watching Arnold Schwarzenegger play more mature and dramatic roles, as opposed to the action roles he played to launch his acting career in the 1980s. Seeing him play these roles makes him seem like more of a normal guy.