Preview by: Jack Foley
REMAKE, remake, remake! There seems to be a glut of remakes at
the moment, veering from the sublime to the ridiculous.
One which could fall into either category is The Flight of the
Phoenix, a big-budget remake of the 1965 original, which starred
James Stewart and an ensemble cast including Ernest Borgnine,
George Kennedy, Peter Finch, Richard Attenborough and Hardy Kruger.
The updated version, directed by John Moore, finds the likes
of Dennis Quaid, Giovanni Ribisi, Tyrese Gibson, Miranda Otto
and Hugh Laurie attempting to survive in the desert, following
a plane crash.
The premise of the film is based upon the novel by Elleston Trevor
and finds a group of air crash survivors - who represent cast-offs
from society who will never be missed - stranded in the Mongolian
desert with no hope of rescue.
As time begins to run out on their
hopes for survival, the survivors attempt to build a new plane
from the wreckage of the old one, in the hopes of flying back
The ensuing trauma helps many of them to rediscover themselves
in the process.
The first film earned Kruger both Golden Globe and Oscar nominations
and was generally considered to be a classic.
Advance word on the remake suggests an enjoyable family adventure
and it is being released in the middle of the Oscar season - although,
from its action-packed trailer, the emphasis would appear to be
more on thrills than awards.
The origin of the title, for trivia, is the myth of the Phoenix,
a bird that dies and is reborn from the flames of its death.
It remains to be seen whether Quaid and co can emerge successfully
from the fiery clutches of the critics' circle.
The film is due for a UK release early next year.