Review: Turbulence (1997)


My general Christmas film watching follows a predictable pattern: some Home Alone, Die Hard, Gremlins, Elf, Nightmare Before Christmas, Jingle All The Way, The Santa Clause, Jack Frost and maybe Bad Santa or some Toy Story (or any Disney/Pixar film despite that they’re not holiday themed they still work), generally post 1980 because I’m not a huge fan of the classics, White Christmas or It’s A Wonderful Life not really my thing. With the newly added Christmas collection on Sky Movies On Demand, I thought I’d have a quick browse and one did catch my eye: Turbulence, who can really resist a bad action film? Cheesy and predictable they can be some of the most entertaining and simple bit of fun.

Ray Liotta plays Ryan Weaver a serial killer being transferred to L.A. for trial and takes his opportunity to hijack the plane, the only person who can stop him is stewardess Teri (Lauren Holly). Not the first and will not be the last plot to take place on a plane, though none come to mind that have been particularly successful. It is not the most intriguing of set-ups but it’s enough to keep your attention. Liotta is not an actor I’ve ever been a huge fan of, Goodfellas doesn’t crack my top films and his repeated playing of men that think too much of themselves has not reflected well on my opinion of him, but I have to admit he did a good job. His performance fits the tone of the film perfectly and I’d actually like to see him do something similar again. The choice of air hostess rather than air marshall to save the day for a change is definitely a nice surprise, I cannot claim that Holly’s acting is the best of the best but as with Liotta it fits the tone of the film. There’s also plenty of familiar faces throughout the film; Brendan Gleeson, Hector Elizondo, Jeffrey Demunn, John Finn, Michael Garney and Total Recall fans will recognise Rachel Ticotin. It’s as perfectly to be expected of a 90’s action film, and so long as that’s how the audience looks at it going in, it should be enjoyable.

The film has a fairly good pace, and despite being predictable is entertaining, I have to say that it’s unusual for me to encourage a film that has such a low IMDB rating (4.7) since they can be pretty accurate but this is one that’s an easy fun watch. It really comes down to the fact that sometimes trashy films are good to watch, and it gives the same reasons that I like to watch Die Hard at Christmas, there’s a little more going on and it’s not too heavy on the holiday cheer, I wouldn’t be able to stand watching constantly positive over the top films, this is a nice buffer. My Christmas film watching will not be starting until December but this is one to keep in mind.

Check out what else is ready and waiting On Demand here:

Verdict: 5/10

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