Gerard Butler’s new movie Plane lands rave reviews

Plane
(Image credit: Lionsgate)

The Plane reviews are in – and it seems Gerard Butler’s new action movie has nailed its landing. Critical response has been pretty positive, with reviewers praising the movie’s twists and turns, as well as Butler’s performance. 

Directed by Jean-François Richet, the movie stars Butler as pilot Brodie Torrance who must navigate an emergency landing after being struck by lightning. While he manages to safely land the aircraft, it seems the trouble has only just begun when the passengers find themselves in a remote part of the Philippines ruled by heavily armed anti-government militias. 

To help save the day and find a way off the island, Torrance teams up with Louis Gaspare (Mike Colter), a convicted murderer who was being transported on the flight. Reviews for the movie have been mostly positive, but for what exactly critics had to say about the blockbuster, check out our round-up below.

Variety – Owen Gleiberman (opens in new tab)

"Plane is a plane thriller that turns into a kidnap-escape thriller that turns into a Defiant Ones buddy thriller that turns into a mission-control thriller that turns back into a plane thriller. But the fact that it’s all those things at once works to its advantage. Jean-François Richet, the French crime-drama director (Mesrine) turned low-down expatriate action stylist (Blood Father), leapfrogs genres so that none of them overstays its welcome. The movie has a likable utilitarian quality, rooted in recognizable behavior, that almost seems to have come out of the pre-Sly-and-Arnold world. If anything, it winds up feeling less stranded on that remote island than Triangle of Sadness does on its."

The Hollywood Reporter – Frank Scheck (opens in new tab)

"By now, Butler is an expert at conveying an effective combination of badassery and vulnerability, making his character’s heroics convincing. Colter has physical presence to spare as the enigmatic Gaspare, and Goldwyn clearly seems to be having a good time as the sort of no-nonsense executive who makes it clear he’s superior to everyone else in the room. The banally titled Plane doesn’t exactly break new cinematic ground, feeling like the sort of routine actioner that might have starred Rod Taylor and Jim Brown back in the ‘60s. But it gets the job done, which is more than you can say for most genre films these days."

IGN – 7/10 – Siddhant Adlakha (opens in new tab)

"A surprisingly grounded action-thriller, Plane is a competently executed Gerard Butler vehicle about a pilot trying to rescue his crew from unnamed militants with the help of a dangerous fugitive. Its few hints of flair may not cement it as a genre classic, but they’re enough to make it momentarily fun."

Los Angeles Times – Katie Walsh (opens in new tab)

"Jean-François Richet’s Plane is as efficient, economical, and effective as its title, which is a good one, actually – clear, descriptive, communicates what the film is about. The characterization in the screenplay by Charles Cumming and J.P. Davis is lean to the point of scanty, but we’re given just enough to suffice, and any more would be overkill."

Indie Wire – B- – David Ehrlich (opens in new tab)

"It’s a cruel world, and the only real heroes we have are a few sweaty men who are willing to go commando – or at least go Commando – when people threaten to kill them with machine guns. Plane may not take you anywhere you’ve never gone before, but if you’re buying a ticket to a movie called 'Plane,' odds are it will get you exactly where you want to go."

The Wrap – Lena Wilson (opens in new tab)

"As an action movie about a plane goes, there is certainly action, and there is certainly a plane. There’s no reason to expect awards-worthy content here. But Plane would be less mind-numbing if it took itself either a little less or a lot more seriously. Maybe this film would feel more gratifying if it focused on a few memorable characters and put them in real danger, or if it threw decorum out the window and went for some gonzo kills. As it is, Plane offers you what nearly every middling airline experience does: peanuts."


Plane arrives in theaters on January 13 in the US and January 27 in the UK. Check out our guide to 2023 movie release dates for what else to add to your watch list.

Fay Watson

I’m an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering TV and film for the Total Film and SFX sections online. I previously worked as a Senior Showbiz Reporter and SEO TV reporter at Express Online for three years. I've also written for The Resident magazines and Amateur Photographer, before specializing in entertainment.