Those who know me personally, they know i love flying to different countries. So far i have only been in 17 countries, and i hope i can continue to travel when this pandemic is slowing down. There is something special about sitting on a plane, knowing you will visit another country. You can relax from work, zip on a nice whiskey and watch a film that´s showing on board. And if you are hearing screaming kids, my advice is take another whiskey, or four more, and you will sleep until you land ( i should have my own travel show on Discovery soon, hoping they will call eventually ). But what if a flight that seems to be going alright, suddenly becomes hijacked by terrorists ? This is something that has happened many times in history, and will most likely happen again. Hollywood have used this subject of plane hijacks in a number of films. And even if i remember some of the films that have brought up this subject, there is one film in particular that i enjoy. And that is the 1996 action-thriller Executive Decision, directed by Stuart Baird ( director of the great horror film The Omen ). This film tells the story of Oceanic Airlines Flight 343, that leaves Athens, Greece and is heading towards Washington D.C. This flight is hijacked by Naji Hassan ( played really well by legendary actor David Suchet ), Co-chief of an extremist organization. And this is where the fun begins, when the Americans are trying to get on board the plane with a really good cast included. How about actors such as Kurt Russel, John Leguizamo and Steven Seagal ( in one of his better acting performances ). Director Stuart Baird manage to make this film engaging from start to finish. A film worth checking out if you enjoy 90´s action films. Have you heard of Amazon Studios, who make both TV series and films? I have seen a couple of their films over the years, but it is actually this year i started looking into their selection a bit more. And this is where i discovered the hijacking action-thriller known as 7500. Is this an unexpected highlight from Amazon Studios, or should they stick to making TV series instead ?
The flight from Berlin Airport is about to take off, as Captain Michael Lutzmann ( Carlo Kitzlinger ) and co-pilot, Tobias Ellis ( Joseph Gordon-Levitt ) prepare for the flight. 2 passengers have been delayed, so they have to wait a few minutes, just in case they have to change with the luggage. Everything turns out alright, and Tobias can talk to his wonderful girlfriend Göcke ( Aylin Tezel ) for a short while, Before she go out to work as one of the flight attendants. As the plane take off, and Everything seems to be in order, the cockpit is attacked by terrorists. Captain Michael is stabbed, as well as Tobias. But Tobias survive with smaller injuries, as he manage to knock out one of the terrorists and lock the door. The other terrorists threaten to kill passengers, unless Tobias let them back in, and he can not land the plane. Tobias is ordered to land the plane in another city, where police will be waiting for them on the flight path. He have no other choice, follow the rules, even if passengers might be killed.
Making a claustophobic film from the cockpit of an airplane is a really good idea, and this actually works in this film. Once you see the main character struggle, to find a way to survive and make sure the passengers are not harmed, you realise that he is in a very difficult situation. But it becomes clear, that he can´t really do much, since he is not allowed to leave the cockpit. So what do you do, when terrorists are theatning to kill the passengers, including his girlfriend ? 7500 may not use a lot of special effects, or is made on an extremely high budget, but this film has a lot to offer if you enjoy claustrophobic thrillers. Lead actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt ( who is such a great actor in a lot of films, especially in the drama comedy Don John, that he also directed ), give us the strongest acting performance in this film. He really goes into his character Tobias with full power, and especially in the scenes when you see him emotionally broken, when his girlfriend is threatened to be killed. Another actor that really goes into his role, is Paul Wollin as one of the terrorists known as Daniel. He is clearly a brain washed religious nut case, who believe dying for Allah is the only way out. I really appreciate the power that Daniel deliver with his performance, and you actually feel that this is a realistic portrait of an terrorist. Another performance that we need to mention, is from actor Omid Memar, who plays the terrorist Vedat. You can clearly tell that Vedat is struggling, that he really does not want anyone to be killed, and he clearly does not agree with Daniel that they should all die. This gives you an interesting portrait of a man who may be thinking that he should not be here, that he made a mistake. Director Patrick Vollrath have made a first directorial debut film that both deliver strong acting performances, but also deliver a realistic thriller film that could happen anywhere in this world. 7500 shows you from different angles, how a hijacked plane can destroy the future for many people, and not only the terrorists. Worth checking out on Amazon Prime, if you enjoyed Executive Decision, and similar films in this category.