"In cooking, as in all the arts, simplicity is a sign of perfection." - Curnonsky

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Dinner & A DVD - Flightplan

Even though I didn't get home until about 7pm. I was able to fix this mouth-watering entree in less than 30 minutes. Turn orange marmalade, mustard and a hint of ginger into a fast-to-fix glaze for ham.

Spiced Ham Steak

1 ham steak
1/4 cup orange marmalade
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon prepared mustard
1 teaspoon corn syrup
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger

In a large skillet coated with a nonstick cooking spray, cook ham for 4 minutes on each side or until lightly browned; drain. Meanwhile, combine the remaining ingredients in a saucepan; bring to a boil. spoon over ham. Cover and cook for 1-2 minutes or until heated through.

Featured Attraction: Flightplan

At the end of "Flightplan," you wonder how could a film that began so promisingly end so tepidly? What went wrong? At what point did the director and writers decide they had to abandon an enticing psychological thriller and give in to turning their story into yet another typical Hollywood thriller?

It's a pity, because the first hour or so of "Flightplan" is actually interesting and exciting, raising delightful possibilities. A woman Kyle (Jodie Foster), suffering from just having lost her husband tragically, winds up losing her young daughter in a new jumbo jet that Kyle just happened to design.

The first act raises enticing questions. Is Kyle telling the truth or is she just nuts, imagining a child that doesn't exist, that no one else seems to have seen? Foster is terrific in the opening act. We buy her anguish and, yet, she causes enough confusion in her character for us to doubt her sanity. There's some nice supporting work from Peter Sarsgaard as Carson, an air marshal, and Sean Bean, as the plane's captain.

But about an hour into the film, the story veers off-course.What had been building as a tense, intriguing mind game turns into a standard thriller. We find characters tossing aside any logic and turn into conveyor-belt characters. It's almost as if the writers ran out of ideas and so decided to tack on the second half by essentially stealing from every other thriller set on a plane.
What are supposed to be surprises only resulted in me being bored. We even get the cliched talking killer who not only reveals all his plans, but explains previous actions. And, if you think about it, the villain's actions make no sense. It's purely a plot device and a terribly weak one at that.

What's ultimately disappointing about "Flightplan" is that given its cast, it had the potential to be an intense thriller. Instead, the only real difference between this film and, say, a Steven Seagal film is the lead actor.

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