Flight of the Phoenix

Rated 2.0 When a cargo plane crash-lands in the desert, the pilot (Dennis Quaid) wants to sit tight and wait for rescue, but one of the surviving passengers (Giovanni Ribisi) says they can salvage enough of the wreckage to fly to safety. Yet another dismal remake of a 40-year-old movie (Robert Aldrich filmed Elleston Trevor’s novel in 1965) illustrates how far movies have come. Computer-generated effects supply a great crash and several impressive sandstorms, but the storytelling is cursory and half-baked. Scott Frank and Edward Burns’ script teems with far more clichés and shallower characters than Lukas Heller wrote in 1965, and director John Moore is unable to build any suspense or sense of danger. The wisecracking, high-fiving crew seems to be larking it up at a beach party—nobody even gets a sunburn.