Just what I expected
Tells a fascinating and unsettling true story, and does so well, without pretending to have all the answers.
A lot of perfectly good film show their cards early, establish a unique premise and let the audience explore a topic at a leisurely pace, without much in terms of surprise. this film is not one of those films.
The film's masterful storytelling did its job. The message was clear. No need to overdo.
Having read several books on this subject (Shootdown of Korean Air Lines flight 007) I have to admit that the facts and points about this sad story extremely accurate. I was surprised to see some comments about this movie stating that the facts cannot be true. All those believing that should pick up a book on the topic from your local library, read it and then judge the facts. I have to admit that since the movie was made (1988) there were several key facts revealed that do not match the movie (example: the name of the Soviet pilot that shot it down), but keeping in mind that the movie is over 16 years old, I have to say that the facts presented in the movie are as close as you'd get back then (I will try and add some interesting facts about this to the "trivia" section).On the other hand, the movie acting-wise and script-wise is poor. It is on a level of a network movie (just as this movie actually is), so my expectations before watching it were set lower than usual. But the movie raises interesting points on whether the US intelligence agencies had anything to do with this plane straying off course. I suggest reading a book on this topic before watching the movie. It may be confusing to those exposed to the story for the first time.
The flight in question originated in Toronto, not New York. Why is that so difficult to handle. This is a movie that tries to present a logical argument to bolster a premise. Yet it deliberately falsifies a key fact. So how can you believe anything else in the film? Why could the principals not have taken a connecting flight to Toronto. Contrary to Hollywood myth, Toronto does have an airport into which most of the world's major airlines have flights. The airport even has indoor plumbing! Even after that outrageous and unnecessary "poetic licence" the film is weak with mediocre acting and mundane production values. Obviously a low budget piece of work. Angela Lansbury was a divinely inspired wrong choice for the female star.
Charlotte Rae Fan
The only reason I ever watched this movie was because Angela Lansbury portrays the main character. I agree with a lot of what's been said so far, too. The movie wasn't a particularly grabbing movie, and it really depressed me with unanswered questions. Ms. Lansbury was brilliant, as usual, and I thought the actors did a great job with their characters, even if there wasn't much to work with. I've seen worse movies, and I've seen better movies. This movie would be worth watching at least once if you're an Angela Lansbury fan. If for nothing else to see how well she plays emotional scenes that she didn't really get to do in Murder, She Wrote. But, like I said, that's really the only reason I watched it, and I haven't watched it since, so apparently even Angela Lansbury, wonderful as she is, wasn't enough to make me want to watch it again.
This movie was obviously made to compel viewers to search for the truth to the event, and this it achieves by showing the viewer exactly why the truth needs to be found. It attempts to present the human side of the tragedy, and compels you to feel sympathy for the victims. This it does, but that is all. Nan Moore is the main character, and she is played by Angela Lansbury in a remotely realistic, and occasionally believable way. In the first hour, this is because of her over acting, but in the end because of the script. The last two scenes, which are meant to provide a strong anti-war theme, sounds so pathetic that I was compelled to laugh as Nan Moore preached about how we as a race must strive to achieve peace and to stop shooting down aircraft over eachothers territory. because of this, the solemn message is lost, and the climax of the whole long, boring film is rendered pointless by the shocking way it is done. Over-all, the movie is not worth seeing under any circumstances- not for entertainment, not for information, and not for drama.