Denzel does the business

Flight (15) Heart of Hawick

In its Maybe You Missed slot at the Heart of Hawick is a film that resurrects director Robert Zemeckis from the techno-savvy animation of The Polar Express et al and reminds movie buffs that Denzel Washington deserved a best actor Oscar – again.

Flight may be too long and it ends in a slush puddle, but the first 40 minutes are unforgettably tense.

Washington plays an airline pilot with a dark secret. He drinks; he snorts; he has sex with the staff. He is hailed as a hero after saving most of the passengers when his plane malfunctions at 20,000ft, but the pressure of fame and a possible court case force him into a spiral of depression and alcohol.

This is familiar territory, including the rehab squeeze (delectable Kelly Reilly), but the film tinkers with the engine of obsessive compulsion without curing its cliches.

Washington shows the healing properties of fine acting and lays doubt to rest.