I give this film 3 out of 5, and not because it’s horrible. The acting, in fact, is excellent, especially considering that the bulk of the actors were unknown. The film making was decent, reminding me instantly of Greengrass’ more notable Bourne films (the last two). The problem was that I felt like a voyeur – spying on somebody else’s tragedy. This movie exemplified the worst sort of dramatic irony; we know from the start that none of the real passengers survived, and the nearly two hours of build up to the inevitable tied my stomach in knots.
I’m not going to make any claims about the film appearing too soon after the September 11th attacks because I don’t think it’s possible to decide such a thing objectively. I think it was difficult for me on a personal level because of the connection to the memories of that day (seeing the footage of the second plane hitting the WTC in the context of the film was particularly hard). Perhaps, for that reason, it bothers me more than any other based-on-a-true-story narrative where people die. Whether this film was a pure tribute or a shameless act of profiteering matters little to me.
I just don’t want to watch it again.