★★★★★ – “A Sublime Experience.”

Sully: Miracle on the Hudson is directed by Clint Eastwood and stars Tom Hanks, Aaron Eckhart, Laura Linney, Valarie Mahaffey, Anna Gunn and Mike O’Malley.

The story of Chesley Sullenberger, an American pilot who became a hero after landing his damaged plane on the Hudson River in order to save the flight’s passengers and crew.

With the remarkable emergency landing on the Hudson River lasting only 208 seconds, I wondered how director Clint Eastwood could handle such an event in 96 minutes. Shot almost entirely on IMAX 65mm cameras and featuring stellar performances from Tom Hanks and Aaron Eckhart, Sully does not disappoint.

Eastwood’s visual style stays intact throughout as he and cinematographer Tom Stern team up once again, capturing the extraordinary brilliance and sheer tension of the now-famous “Miracle” on January 15th, 2009. With a story that cuts between the overwhelming news coverage and the landing itself, Sully feels incredibly fresh and grounded.

Tom Hanks’ performance as Chesley Sullenberger is wonderfully realistic and touching. There are a few moments in the final scenes that really pull the whole picture together in the most satisfying way, and this is greatly supported by Hanks’ phenomenal act. Alongside is Aaron Eckhart as Jeff Skiles, who brings a lighter shade to the film, delivering some acceptable and amusing lines of dialogue that feels absolutely necessary when securing the film’s human touch.

Composer Christian Jacob and The Tierney Sutton Band take a personal approach when tackling the project, with ravishing piano pieces and lush string arrangements smoothly weaved into the picture, culminating as the screen turns black.

Blu Murray returns to aid Eastwood as editor and this resembles all of their previous work together. The cutting here is masterfully handled, ensuring all scenes are flowing with attentive care whilst providing a fast-paced and sublime experience.

With over 50 years of proficiency in acting and helming over 30 directional projects, Clint Eastwood has become one of the greatest icons of the film industry. Yet, even with so much under his belt, he can pull off something different and unique each time. Sully is a fine example of that. Truly wonderful filmmaking.

Verdict; Although taking place on the Hudson River, Sully feels undeniably grounded in its masterful direction and skilful undertaking. 

Sully: Miracle on the Hudson – ★★★★★ (9/10)

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