In the new movie by Robert Zemeckis, Whip Whitaker (Denzel Washington) is, in his own words, “flying.” And it’s apparent early on that he’s right about that in more ways than one: he’s an airline pilot of unusual gifts, and he’s a spectacularly reckless consumer of drugs and alcohol as well. Whitaker practices both kinds of flying more or less interchangeably, and in the course of Flight, a heroic exploit, which is also a lethal misadventure, forces him to face up to the full consequences of who and what he has become. Skillfully scripted by John Gatins, Flight is a rousing, pungent character study, with a fine, nuanced performance from a smoldering Washington. And while it is not the action/disaster epic that its preview trailers might seem to suggest, it does ride a long ways on the energy of its flawed, semi-tragic protagonist’s daring and swagger. Cinemark 14, Feather River Cinemas and Paradise Cinema 7. Rated R.