Reviewed By

Christopher Armstead
I remember seeing the trailer for this film '7500'… like years ago.  It looked to be an interesting concept with a nice cast, capped off by a very haunting cover of John Denver's 'Leaving on a Jet Plane', and as such I was interested in seeing it.  Like years ago.  Soon this movie became the 'Gallowwalkers' of its time since most of us forgot all about it, and it looked like it was never coming out anyway.  Well it's finally here, and for a moment or two it looked like it might be worth the wait.  For a moment or two at least.

It's flight time as flight 7500 prepares for its trip somewhere to Tokyo.  We have air waitresses Laura (Leslie Bibb) and Suzy (Jamie Chung) serving beverages… note that having been on hundreds of flights, I've never had stewardesses who looked like this… Pilot Jim (Jonathan Schaech) is behind the controls, newlyweds Rick (Jerry Ferrara) and Liz (Nicky Whelan) are on board to annoy, married couple Brad (Ryan Kwanten) and Pia (Amy Smart) are on their last trip before calling it quits for good, and goth chick Jacinta (Scout Taylor-Compton) is here to provide some death exposition for the audience. 

The flight takes off and it's all good, except for that weird dude.  You know the guy, nervous, seems to be hiding something, will invariably screw everything up?  That guy.  Sure enough, this guy screws everything up by dying on the plane in a fit of bloody vomit, despite the best efforts of those around to try to save him, but now the mystery begins.  What killed this guy?  Does he have some kind of Ebola-esque virus?  Is he zombie?  Is he a mythical ghost monster?  We ask these things because surely he just can't be a dead guy on an airplane, can he?

The next strange thing that happens on flight 7500 is that the plane runs into some severe turbulence causing the flight to depressurize, bringing down the oxygen masks.  No real harm or foul there beyond a few seconds of oxygen deprivation, but this event does seem to amp up the weirdness factor.  Now some of our passengers on the plane are starting to see some really weird stuff, and that dead guy… it looks like he's missing which can never be a good thing. 
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Now our passengers, turned detectives, need to get to the bottom of what's happening on this plane, and considering that one by one they are disappearing, I'm guessing getting snatched by the missing dead guy, time is running out.  Eventually, they will figure this thing out and it is this final solution that will either make or break this film for you.

This film was directed by Takashi Shimizu of 'The Grudge' fame, and even though I was unaware that he directed this film until the final credits rolled, it kind of makes sense because as '7500' was coming to its end, I was thinking this movie was playing out like some bad Japanese horror movie.  It wasn't always that way though. 

As is typical in Japanese horror, there is the slow build.  We are introduced to our characters, we get to know a little bit about these characters to pave the way for us hopefully caring about whatever fate happens to these characters, and then the first bomb drops alerting us that all is not well.  All that is setup pretty efficiently, and we would expect nothing less from a director with the pedigree of Takashi Shimizu.  The mystery deepens, and personally I'm invested in what's going on, and quite honestly it's getting a little creepy and there's the one scene in particular that lets us know that whatever is going on in Flight 7500 is about to hit the fan.  At this point I'm thinking we may have a winner on our hands.

But it turns out that one scene was the apex of the film and the movie pretty much descends into tedium from that point on.  The filmmakers were unable to build upon that one scene of pretty cool horror, as the movie just plodded on, until we reached the reasons why what is happening was happening, and for whatever reason, I found this solution completely unsatisfying, or more accurately I found it underwhelming.

This is all personal of course, because you very well could find the conclusion Earth shattering, but I think I was looking for something… more.  I think I was looking forward to something more horror oriented, since this movie was setting itself up to be a freaky, ghost, monster type story, but I got something more along the lines of… heck, I don't what you would call it.  I do know that it's something I've seen before on numerous occasions, done better on numerous occasions, but even if this were pulled off better, I doubt I'd still be pleased with it.

It's too bad really, because '7500' pretty much has everything you'd think one would need to pull off a fine frightening experience.  Experienced director, rock solid cast, great atmosphere and a closed setting in which there is no possible escape.  What we ended up with was a great start that ended up being a little tired, and eventually ran out of steam, and this makes us sad.
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