Canada, 1997, 89 minutes, Colour.
Steve Gutenberg, Kim Coates, Tom Higginson, Sean Bean, Colm Feore.
Directed by Julian Grant.
Airborne is a Canadian thriller about a virus in outer space, the stealing of it, the team trying to recover it, the revelation that one of the team was the mastermind to steal it. This is routine material and is presented in a routine way. In fact, the storytelling is not persuasive. Part of the difficulty is the strange casting of Steve Gutenberg as the iron-jaw, jaw-jutted hero. He doesn't smile, looks more intense than most action heroes put together. He is quite unpersuasive in the role. The villain is much smoother, Colm Feore (who was the same kind of villain in many a film like the Martin Lawrence comedy drama, National Security). Sean Bean appears briefly at the end of the film as another villain. There is a lot of action, special effects - but the total impact of the film is not impressive.
1. The popularity of this kind of action conspiracy film? Its quality, storytelling, characterisations?
2. The space settings, Earth settings? The special effects? Action and editing? Musical score?
3. The plausibility of the plot, space, villains? The virus? The team and their work to discover the virus? The villain and the conspiracy?
4. The opening, space, the confrontation in space? The virus itself?
5. The team, Mc Neill and his leadership, the iron-jawed hero? Looking tough, under suspicion? His relationship with the rest of the team, the deaths? With Simpson? Mr Murdoch, the control? Going into action, the deaths, the set-ups? The final confrontation, the plane, the revelation that Simpson was the villain? His henchmen, the shootouts?
6. The other members of the team, the girl, tough, friendship with McNeill? Under danger in her apartment? Her work, contribution? The black member of the team, contribution, death?
7. Simpson, his place in the administration, his support of the team, going along with them? The revelation that he was the villain? How credible? His henchmen and the other members of the team to steal the virus?
8. Murdoch, in charge, suspicions? The confrontations, the finale - and the team being set up as a decoy in order to trap Simpson?
9. The audience for this kind of film? Popular entertainment? Routine?