Flight 7500 went missing from the cinema landscape before August 31, 2012, when the call letters were Flight 75, then suddenly appeared on the horizon in October 2014 overseas primarily and not finding a landing strip in the United States, until April 12, 2016, a secret touchdown on DVD. This is a tame horror film, but the backstory of the creation and delay seems to find more interesting in the discovery of the mystery. Director Takashi Shimizu known for his The Grudge success and screenwriter Craig Rosenberg (The Uninvited (2009)) teamed together back on November 5, 2011, starting the filming process, disaster movie formula with supernatural influences swirling around occult and demonic powers for an 11-hour flight from Los Angeles for Tokyo. However, their takeoff in both the movie and real-life never went smoothly, adding to the cryptic mystery of Flight 7500.
Let’s first deal with the movie, and then mystery. The storyline fits into the general airplane disaster movie yet flipping the catastrophe into an unleashed entity of supernatural demonic powers with an affirmative nod to Japanese occultism that made Shimizu famous. Therefore, the routine introduction of the cast by visit them all, and sadly never a great way, unless one does more lead-up in a broader introduction, hence the passengers all with doldrums of various future plans and troubled histories. Never does the abrupt cut-away occur when someone states an ominous remake, to try to heighten the suspense or intrigue the audience. First, meet Jake (Alex Frost) a thief trying to charm Raquel (Christian Serratos, of The Walking Dead (TV Series)), more concerned about a possible pregnancy than his unwelcomed advances. Jacinta (Scout Taylor-Compton, known from Halloween 2007), who ideally nails her character’s behaviors a typical gothic girl fascinated about death, chatting with Rick (Jerry Ferrara), an unhappy new husband accompanied by his extremely high maintenance wife, Liz (Nicky Whelan). Meanwhile, rounding out the principle passengers Brad (Ryan Kwanten from True Blood) and Pia (Amy Smart) struggling with a planned trip, their relationship melts faster than ice cream on a hot day as their dreams of becoming parents ending in nightmarish situation. One must not overlook the crew flight attendants Suzy, in an endless engagement and Laura layover affair with a married Captain Haining (Johnathon Schaech). While the conflicts of these individuals list themselves as formulaic, and almost stereotypical in airline disaster film, the presentation sets everything fresh in place the turmoil to brew. A sudden hit of turbulence causes one of the passengers to have an overacted panic attack and dies, setting off a series of spooky events such as, demonic hands appearing from darkness, passengers vanishing, and confusing editing.
Now for the mystery surrounding the delayed Flight 7500, CBS Films in May 2012, pulled from the schedule for an April 2013 release date, October 2013 and then mid-March 2014. On March 8, 2014, Malaysian Flight 370 was traveling from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing when it suddenly lost contact with air traffic control and until July 29, 2015, debris of flaperon washed ashore. This flight suddenly disappeared without warning in midair, with 239 people on board all presumed dead, sparking a worldwide outcry. Hence, the human tragedy pushes the film back quietly release it theatrically (and both Blu-ray / DVD) internationally in countries such as Philippines, Turkey, Germany, and Japan. As of September 1, 2015, the international gross for the film is $2.8 million, and seen on the net in 2015, where this reviewer watched it, though the title of read 7500. Some suggest the lingering reminders of 9/11 however this theory, falls apart, because at least eight horror films involving planes were released after September 11, 2001, and one was Flying Virus (2001) released on December 31, 2001. Besides the disaster-movies Airport (1970) and The Towering Inferno (1974) pulled early on for obviously reasons but both have aired many times since then. Likely reason for the push back, the movie failed to scare, living up to the potential of the stars and talent, unsure if the movie had poor marketing or several hands involving in the editing, and either case the film needed more maintenance, before given clearance to leave the hanger. Perhaps this movie will one day have its actors earning Oscars just like the dreadful Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation (1994) did with Renee Zellweger and Matthew McConaughey to assist in the recouping of finances.
The movie fits the horror genre, and leans a bit on the thriller side, yet never develops the spiritual apparitions to an interesting level, maintaining everything on auto-pilot with a very fake plane mock-up and very little gore or profanity. It all feels strip-down cargo flight of boredom, and generates an odd edit, and disjointed venture as if hijacked (by the way 7500 is code for a hijacking) added more unnecessary turbulence. The acting hits the correct position but never enough to save the doom of Flight 7500.
I found the film a tad similar in regard to plot to a much older and likely unknow horror movie called The Horror at 37,000 Feet (1973), with a plot, quoting IMDb “An invisible demon in the cargo hold of a jet airliner terrorizes the passengers.” The mystery falters and the creepy encounters approach slowly, not with a scare, but a whimper. Sadly, no suspense and the tone presents itself a strain and flatlining at times, filling itself with generic clichés customary in all horror movies, but herein saturated far too often ruins the flick. Therefore, only the fans of the mentioned actor will have some enjoyment otherwise avoid the movie.
This review original posted on Rogue Cinema’s July 2016 with 1,541 views.
IMDb Rating: 4.8/10
Baron’s Rating: 4.5/5