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Flight: The Rise and Fall of Charles Lindbergh

Garth Wingfield's bio-drama of the famous American aviator is more like an overstated cautionary tale about the perils of being a celebrity. Rather than presenting a structured story with a plot or dramatic arc, the writer gives us a montage of scenes, which comes across like a collection of news headlines and interviews. Gerald Downey does a fine turn as the Everyman pilot, whose 1927 flight from New York to Paris brought him instant acclaim. And then there's the matter of the kidnapping of baby Charles, and Lindy's foot-in-mouth debacle as a Nazi sympathizer, all of which occurred in the span of 14 years, turning Lindbergh from hero to heel. Wingfield doesn't probe these events in depth, nor does he provide a meaningful context or perspective, which is too bad because we miss a true sense of Lindbergh and his life. (He was also an author, scientist and environmentalist.) Instead, the picture here is of a likable but cranky "aw-shucks," fellow slyly exploited by a bevy of rapacious reporters (played by Eric Charles Jorgenson), who is badly in need of a P.R. man. The acting is spotty at best, but Robin Roy is passable as Anne Lindbergh. James Carey provides good direction. Attic Theater & Film Center, 5429 W. Washington Blvd., L.A., Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m., Sun., 2 p.m., through March 14. (323) 525-0600.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m. Starts: Feb. 7. Continues through March 14, 2009


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