Amelia - Review

Ages: PG

The fascination with Amelia Earhart goes on and on. Seeing the movie, you are reminded of why that is so. The tragic end to an amazing life, as she was about to accomplish her greatest and most dangerous flight - circumnavigating the globe - makes her the world's most remembered lost person.

Mira Nair, her range seems to be limitless, she directed MonsoonWedding. In Amelia she wisely focuses the movie on the aviatrix's intense obsession with flying - showing her world, her place in it, her reason for living, through the lens of flying. Amelia once described flying as being in a three-dimensional world and free. A beginning scene shows her as a child in Kansas seeing a plane as a way of lifting her above Kansas. What is it about Kansas that makes people so eager to leave it?

Hilary Swank does a great job as Amelia. When you go to the bonus Movietone news clips you realize how accurately she has portrayed her character - her looks, her voice. So important when you are depicting an icon. There are many scenes where she has to act back to herself - sitting alone in a cockpit - they are hard scenes to play. Playing strong women characters seems to fit her character and features - she played in Iron Jawed Women - a harrowing film about the suffragettes and their fight for women's right to vote.

Richard Gere plays George Putnam and develops his character from a self-centered publicity huckster into a loving mate for Amelia - providing and helping her get the thing she wants most of all - flying. Putnam gets short shrift in Amelia's film but he was an explorer, author of a number of books, a publisher, and established George Palmer Putnam Inc. a publishing house.

Gene Vidal, played by Ewan McGregor, looks almost too polished to have been captain of the football team at West Point. Little is mentioned about his role in establishing the commercial aviation industry - he founded three national airlines. But - it is Amelia's movie.

Christopher Eccleston plays Fred Noonan, the hotshot celestial navigator - who goes down with Amelia, and conveys in a few short scenes his loyalty and admiration for her. An all round believable cast and satisfying movie.

Fun Factor: Satisfying look into the life of the aviatrix
Female Factor: Mira Nair does a superlative job in bringing Amelia to the screen.

Reviewed by: Editor - 02/10

  • Amelia
  • © Twentieth Century Fox
  • Platform(s): DVD
  • To Order: DVD $17.99