When you’re ripped from your life too quickly, you have to let go of whatever is keeping you here
I first heard of “7500” several years ago and was eagerly anticipating it. It got delayed several times but then I got the chance to watch it unexpectedly and I was very excited. This turned into what is an increasing occurrence in my movie-watching experience. I get excited about a film, wait a long time for it to come out and then I wish I hadn’t.
There haven’t been many films set on a plane in recent years, and there is probably a very good reason for that. Whilst there is the occasional good entry, such as the recent Liam Neeson film “Non-stop”, the majority are terrible, not very well thought out and not very interesting because of the constricting setting. One horror film comes to mind that is set on a plane that didn’t really work and that was “Flight of the Living Dead”, a zombie film with much of the same problems that I am about to go into with this film.
The “Resident Evil” series slow motions you to death, the “Paranormal Activity” series bores you to death, the “Saw” franchise makes you desensitised to death, 7500 clichés you to death and I would go as far as saying that this film shows why it wasn’t going to get a major release, even before it was finished..
The 7500 flight from Los Angeles to Tokyo sets off as normal with honeymooners, tourists, backpackers and the usual assortment of characters that you get on flights. Nothing seems out of the ordinary on the flight as everyone settles in for the ten hour flight before hitting light turbulence after less than an hour. Although things seem normal at first, a passenger unexpectedly dies from unknown causes but the pilot agrees with the ground crew to continue as planned.
Despite everyone being uneasy due to the death, everything runs relatively smoothly until the plane hits more several turbulence and descends rapidly from the sky before stabilising.
Soon afterwards more mysterious happenings occur, including the disappearance of people, even the dead body, passing F16 Fighter Jets and a mist filling various sections of the plane at random intervals. Can they make it to Tokyo safely?
So what are the main problems.
The very fact I’ve just struggled to put the plot into more than two sentences should tell it’s own story.
Well it’s hard to get invested in a film which is only 76 minutes long, regardless of Wikipedia trying to claim it’s nearly 100 minutes long. I watched the film online and from the second it starts to the second the credits start rolling is just a few seconds over the 76 minute mark. I’m not saying that short films are necessarily bad films, afterall, you get TV shows where the pilot is only an hour long and it makes you want to go back and watch some more. However, TV is very different to movies and in the latter, if your film is only going to be 76 minutes long, you really need to have something pretty amazing to make you care about the situation or the characters, and this fails miserably.
The characters are about as clichéd as it gets. I wasn’t routing for a single one of them because they’re not particularly interesting and most are one dimensional. I think of the recent film “Cabin in the Woods” and the reason that was so successful was because it actually took the clichés from the horror genre and all of the monsters and actually made them sync together, “7500” doesn’t do anything of the sort. Infact, I can’t recall seeing as many clichés in such a short amount of time for a film with so few characters, infact, here is the list of the main characters and their clichés;
Martin and Pia : A couple that has recently split up but haven’t told any of their friends, including the couple they are going on holiday with (a couple who might I add actually you never see again after the plane takes off). Pia consistently sees a mother and child playing together and is saddened due to their failed attempts to have a child.
Laura : Flight attendant who is having an affair with the pilot.
Jamie : Recently engaged but is unsure whether she actually wants to marry her fiance.
Lance : A mysterious business man who remains mysterious before he is the first character that dies. Even after he dies and they investigate his belongs you don’t really know anything about him.
Alex : Racist thief who thinks he knows better than anyone else.
Racquel : She might be pregnant, she might not, the main question is do we actually care?
Jacinta : Emo/gothic girl who obsessed with death and being anti-social.
Rick and Liz : Recently married couple who are heading on their honeymoon. Rick doesn’t want to talk about the marriage with completely strangers but Liz is quite possibly the most pathetic character of them all.
Liz, who is rightfully nicknamed “Bridezilla” by the flight attendants, is quite possibly the most irritating person in the film and you know instantly what type of character you are going to get when the first time you meet her is when she is sitting down and going through everyone walking towards her, begging for that person not to be sat next to her. She forces her wedding photos on people who openly say that they don’t care and is one of the most superficial characters in the history of cinema. She doesn’t develop at all throughout the entire film to the point where her character is painful to watch.
I’d be as scared as Jacinta (left) if I had to sit next to Bridezilla
Infact, I’m going to spoil how the film ends just so you can see just how painfully one-dimensional the character is. I will put this in white font so that if you don’t want to see then you don’t have to. To see just highlight the next few lines following this.
So basically at the second event of major turbulence the plane’s structure actually develops a rupture and causes a major decompression event, causing the loss of oxygen in the cabin. The oxygen masks develop a malfunction and all passengers on board die. They do not realise that they are dead as they are in some form of purgatory and at the end of the film. When they realise that they have been dead whilst all of the mysterious occurrences have been going on (via seeing a TV report that pops up on the main screens and seeing their own dead bodies), they all accept their fate and move on into the afterlife…….except “Bridezilla” who remains there, unable to accept the fact that she is dead.
That’s the spoiler over with, so now back to the review…..
Much like most other horror films of the last 20 or so years ago, the film seems to rely on jump scares and you are not even slightly terrified by what you see. Everything about this movie is a cliche and considering it’s a horror film, there is nothing that is actually worth your time. In America this was released as a PG-13, their equivalent of the UK’s 12A rating. Now again, don’t get me wrong, you don’t have to necessarily have an 18 rating to have a scary movie, but if you’re going to have it at a level where even kids can watch it, you’re going to have to do something very unusual in order to make it scary, and again this film fails miserably.
There is a force that the characters can see (which we don’t) after the second load of turbulence that is never explained. What happened to the businessman is never explained (especially the part where his eyes change shape and colour briefly) and those are just two of the many elements that the film wants to you effectively try and figure out yourself. Now, don’t get me wrong again, some of the best films in recent years have had elements where you have to figure it out for yourself, or left you guessing (such as what happens at the very end of “Inception”) but the reason it works in those films and not “7500” is because you actually care about what is happening in those films, you care about the characters and figuring it out for yourself is one of the most enjoyable parts of the movie. You don’t get anything close to that in “7500”.
If you’re going to try to be an intelligent horror movie, come up with something that people haven’t seen before, because otherwise people won’t care.
If you like clichés in your horror films then this is definitely for you. Some films that are actually quite good don’t make it to the big screen because of various reasons, but it is obvious from the outset why this barely saw the light of day in a cinema.
I have reviewed some awful films for this site in the relatively short history, but this has to be one of the least enjoyable experiences of the lot. Don’t waste your time.