Flightplan

  • Directors: Robert Schwentke
  • Producers: Robert DeNozzi, Charles J D Schlissel, Brian Grazer
  • Writers: Peter A Dowling, Billy Ray
  • Genres: Action, Mystery, Thriller
  • Actors: Jodie Foster, Peter Sarsgaard, Sean Bean, Erika Christensen

Kyle Pratt (Jodie Foster) is a propulsion engineer based out of Berlin, Germany. Her husband David died from falling off the roof of an avionic manufacturing building, and now Kyle and her six year-old daughter Julia (Marlene Lawston) are flying home to Long Island to bury him and stay with Kyle’s parents. They fly aboard a fictional Elgin E-474,[1] which Kyle helped design. After falling asleep for a few hours, Kyle wakes to find that Julia is missing. After trying to remain calm at first, she begins to panic, and Captain Marcus Rich (Sean Bean) is forced to conduct a search. Kyle walks the aisles, questioning people, but none of her fellow passengers remembers having seen her daughter either. Shockingly, one of the flight attendants calls in to the airport they just departed from, and the gate attendant says that they have no record of Julia boarding the flight. In addition, according to the passenger manifest, Julia’s seat is registered empty. When Kyle checks for Julia’s boarding pass, it is missing.

Marcus refuses to allow the cargo hold to be searched because he is afraid that the searchers could be hurt if the plane shifted due to turbulence. Both Marcus and the other crew members suspect that Kyle has become unhinged by her husband’s recent death, and has imagined bringing her daughter aboard. Faced with the crew’s increasing skepticism regarding her daughter’s existence, Kyle becomes more and more desperate. Because of her increasingly erratic, panicked behavior, air marshal Gene Carson (Peter Sarsgaard) is ordered by Marcus to guard her.

Kyle, carrying Julia, exits via a cargo door. Everyone watches in shock and amazement as Kyle carries her daughter out onto the tarmac. In the passenger waiting section of the airport, Marcus apologizes to Kyle and leads her to a van which has come to take them the rest of their way. Julia wakes up and sleepily asks “Are we there yet?” The two get in the van and drive away.

State of Play

  • Directors: Kevin Macdonald
  • Producers: Andrew Hauptman, Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner
  • Writers: Matthew Michael Carnahan, Tony Gilroy, Peter Morgan, Billy Ray, Paul Abbott
  • Genres: Crime, Drama, Thriller
  • Actors: Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck, Rachel McAdams, Helen Mirren, Jason Bateman

The plot is similar to that of the original 6-part program, retaining several main characters, but condensing and changing certain aspects to fit the two-hour format. The film is set in Washington, D.C. and tells of Stephen Collins (Affleck), a fast-rising United States Congressman with ambitions to become his party’s presidential candidate. This goal is threatened after his mistress (Maria Thayer), a former research assistant, is found dead in suspicious circumstances, while right-wing opponents to Collins’ campaign for social reform attempt to use the scandal to kill his political career. During a probe into a series of seemingly unrelated murders, Cal McCaffrey (Crowe), an investigative journalist and Collins’ former campaign manager, finds himself tasked with solving the case, becoming romantically involved with the Congressman’s estranged wife (Wright Penn) in the process.[2][3][4][5]