Final Descent (1997) Movie Script

- Hello.
- Hi, Mrs. Singer.
- Hi, Cindy.
- Is Mike home?
Well, he's doing
his homework.
At least, he better be.
I'll get him.
She's ready Frank.
The wing pitch
ought to be perfect.
Glen Singer, are you
in that barn again?
Go ahead you're the oldest.
Of course, it's your barn.
All right.
Meet me at the pasture Frank.
Is anything broken?
Yeah, the wing-struts.
Not enough wind.
Insane. Frank O'Hearn,
I know Glen's crazy
but I thought you had
more sense.
No, Ma'am, I don't.
She's right Glen, that
was nuts.
I'll tell you what you are
Glen Singer... are flat out lucky.
Lucky, Lucky, get up!
No need to get physical.
That's my job.
You got a run tonight, remember?
I never mix business with pleasure.
Here I thought, your
business was your pleasure.
You're in for it now.
I'm in for it alright.
I'm in all the way.
Hey, it's cold in here.
I know, that's why I need
the blanket.
You just scared me to death
you know?
Just now, when I told you
how I really feel.
Just for one second,
I thought you were...
...going to tell me how,
you really felt.
Well, I'll tell you how I feel
there's a line of thunderstorms,
...running to the length of
the Rockies,
...and my flight's
going to be delayed.
Let's go back to bed.
Wrong... I called operations
15 minutes ago... go out on time.
Oh, and guess who your
co-pilot is?
Guess. I don't wanna guess.
Caston? Not Caston.
That guy is so boring.
- Not Caston.
- Lamort?
Is it Lamort?
I don't wanna hear anymore
about the internet.
I hate the internet.
- You caught a break, Ace.
- Who?
Honey, come on I'll drive.
No, I wanna go to my house
when we get back tomorrow.
Hey come on, they're actually
gonna let us fly together.
- Don't be mad.
- I'm not mad.
How long have we been on
this ride of ours?
Almost a year.
I love the ride, Lucky.
I've just reached the point...
...where I wanna know we're
going somewhere.
We are going somewhere, Dallas.
Hilarious. Does Letterman know
about you?
Connie come on. We have the
whole trip to talk about it.
Come on.
So how'd you pull it off?
- Luck of the draw.
- Yeah.
Some draw for a pilot
with two years... the right seat.
Two years and three months, thank you.
Look you're a terrific pilot,
and you've got...
...zilch for seniority.
What'd you do?
Buy Bouchard a box of candy?
We have 600 co-pilots,
maybe it was just the odds.
Yeah, right.
George Bouchard and I,
are strictly business.
You know that.
I know that, does he?
Don't make this about me. He
just wants you to fly his way.
Look, it is about you.
And I don't fly a glass cock-pit.
I actually work the flaps.
If you think I would take
advantage of a very old...
...very dead relationship
with the chief of pilots...
...just for the chance to
fly with...
He cut a deal.
I fly with you tonight and...
So does he.
Oh, no Connie.
He said you're due for
a check ride.
Oh, come on.
Check ride? With Darth Vader?
Bye-bye honey.
I'll see you tomorrow.
I love you.
Wave bye-bye to Mommy.
Don't let him talk you
in to sugar, Mark.
Adam, don't open the...
My bone!
Are you okay?
All right.
Bone lives.
You know what this
is about?
They're rating every pilot.
If there's a takeover thing...
Not if, when.
Takeover is going to happen
and when it does, I'm out.
Not a chance, you're
the best they have got.
Just play their game.
Is that what you think
I should do?
What if they lay you off?
Then Bouchard will have you
all to himself.
I am serious, what will
you do?
I can always go back
to flying the pipe-line in Alaska.
I'll find something.
And what will I do?
They're not gonna lay off a
It looks too good on their
diversified employee record.
I'm nobody's token, Lucky.
Flight 756
Non-stop service...
- Is there a meal Ms. Dupree?
- Yeah, in the barf bag, Tasha.
Settle down Freddie.
Hi, we're the
Waters Elementary band group.
Is Flight 19 on time?
Yes, ma'am.
You've got yourself quite
a platoon there.
Yeah, but they've got me.
Our principal offered
to come along.
Maybe I should have taken
her up.
Stop pushing.
Freddie, stop pushing.
You'll fly with the baggage,
I swear.
That's exactly where you belong.
Mom, I have to go to the bathroom.
Again? Go tell your father.
It's his first flight.
And the band's first competition...
And I thought I was having
a bad day.
Where are you headed with this?
- We're going to Dallas.
- Yeah? Us too.
- Are you the pilot?
- Both of us.
I got a good idea for you.
Tell the lady at the counter,
you want special handling...
...for that cymbal.
We'll put it someplace
where it won't get bent.
Special handling? Cool.
See you on board.
Did I tell you I know the pilots?
Full tank, Captain.
Oil's fine too.
Thanks, Harlan.
Gee, Lucky, I never thought
of that.
Oil your pencil.
Do they write faster that way?
Evening, George.
Could be.
You might wanna use this
to grade my flight tonight.
I assume you're gonna be
doing a lot of writing.
Oh, no thanks.
I got three pens of my own
for this trip.
Incidentally, my ship has
dedicated instruments to... oil pressure.
You might wanna copy that in your log.
It's not your ship, it's my ship.
And I don't trust instruments.
They break.
She's a brand new Gallant 270.
She cost $60 million and at
that price nothing breaks.
No kidding?
I guess Southeast Air is gonna
get a refund on their 270...
...that went down in Anchorage.
Have a good flight, Sir.
- Hey Captain.
- Hi.
- Your seat Sir.
- Thank You.
Where do I find a flight plan?
It's around the corner, Sir.
You're headed North, there's rain.
I got $77,000 worth of instruments.
Weather's not a problem.
Credit card is my log book.
Top me off okay?
I'm going for coffee.
$77,000 worth of instruments and
and a whopping two hundred
hours of flight time.
My brother-in-law extended
his visit, Juan.
So don't add to my misery.
No way, we're having a great
day Boss.
We closed 9 right to fix the
runway lights.
Better get some cars over there
to help out with the traffic.
We got three out there now.
Don't get too far ahead, or
you'll have my job.
Who the hell wants your job?
Good evening, Carl.
Good game today?
We lost. I went 0 for 4.
Ah, well there is always tomorrow.
Yeah, tomorrow we'll probably
go 0 for 5.
Tango. Alpha. Foxtrot.
Four. Two. Eight.
- Hey, Connie.
- Hi, George.
Oh, you do wonders for that uniform.
Thank You.
You know, I remember the first
time you were in that seat.
You were very nervous.
And you helped me a lot.
I'll always be grateful.
Oh, grateful.
Aren't we passed grateful,
you and me?
Oh, George, we've talked about this.
I made a mistake,
I never should have...
But you should have.
I'm sorry. You just got me
at a weak moment.
I was, mad at...
Someone else, and...
you were there.
Someone else?
You know he's still pulling
the pencil routine of his.
It's his way of being thorough.
What sort of a pilot do
you know...
...who uses a pencil to measure oil
on a Gallant 270?
He carries a tire gauge
to check the air pressure.
Next thing you're gonna know
he's gonna break into the
Texaco jingle, right
in front of the passengers.
Well, at least they'll know
they're in good hands...
No, no, no, they will think
they are in good hands.
John Wayne is dead.
You got to get past this guy.
You got too good a future.
You're right.
Lucky's old-fashioned...
Compulsive, stubborn...
trouble is, I like that in a man.
Lucky, I...
I want you to fly by the
wire tonight.
Peter Pan flies by wire.
Well then...
Seriously, it's computer's night.
Is the rumor I heard true George?
What rumor?
I heard you're gonna eliminate
Connie's position.
Eliminate the first officer?
That's what I heard. Heard you're gonna
put a German shepherd in the right seat.
Yeah, the dogs aren't going
to actually fly the plane...
they're just going to
bite the pilot every time
he reaches for the controls.
Very funny.
Fly the box tonight.
I can fly the computer, George.
I can also fly the airplane,
which is what I prefer.
Listen, we want you and all...
the other pilots to
stay to the order.
Yeah, but what you get are
pilots who are bored to death.
That's what causes pilot error.
No, pilots cause pilot error.
And they fail four times more
often than the system.
Then give them a reason
to stay awake.
Let their gut do some work.
The people in the back seats
wanna know...
that a human being is in-charge.
Look, Lucky, I want it
auto-flight tonight.
What happened to you George?
You used to be a flier,
not Bill Gates.
I grew up.
I joined Management
and I left barn storming
to history.
Now fly by the wire.
Look, why don't we drop
the pre-tense here alright?
This airline is being downsized...
and you'd love to see me go
so why don't you write
all the red marks you want
on that chart?
But, I'm flying the damn
airplane, okay?
Lucky, Lucky, Lucky...
What happened to your ambition?
You're gonna spend the rest of
your life in a cock-pit?
God, I hope so.
You just gave him permission
to lay you off.
Oh, he doesn't need my permission.
And you don't give a damn.
What do you want me to do?
How about join the real world?
Toe the line for once like
the rest of us,
accept some responsibility,
shall I go on?
I don't understand the problem...
Let me spell it out for you.
I am tired of, how did you
say it, "staying awake
"and letting my gut do the work in this
relationship..." because
if we have a future...
I don't like the direction.
Connie, the last time
I planned a future... cost me a lot.
A lot of pain, a lot of sleep...
...a lot of alimony.
I am not much good at futures.
Well, then I'll quit worrying
about it.
All right, let's go to Dallas.
Number 9748 Charlie.
Clouds at 6000.
Winds five to ten, gusting to 20.
There's an icy level at
7000 feet.
Roger dispatch.
I can take this.
We're certified.
I'm sure you are, Sir. I'm
just reporting conditions.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen.
I am Jill Zimmer, your
chief flight-attendant.
We'll be underway shortly
on Quest Airline's
beautiful new Gallant 270
Please make sure all
carry-on's are safely
stowed in the over-head bin
or under the seat...
in front of you.
Thank you.
Or if you have any questions...
one of our cabin crew will be...
happy to assist you.
Stop it.
And that you have a safe,
happy flight.
Adam, don't stare.
- Can I help?
- No.
They cram so many seats into
these planes nowadays...
and it flies a lot of people
but they sure don't care about
passenger comfort.
I remember the last time,
that I flew...
Please Ma'am...
Oh, you can call me Patty.
I'll tell you about my last trip...
I sat there, minding my
own business...
didn't hear one word from
my seat-mate about their job...
their destination or
their family. You know what?
It was perfect.
I'm Mr. Cotts, my office
reserved a new a...
what do you call it,
a flying conference room?
Uh, yes Sir.
Mr. Cotts we have your reservation...
but you have to seat in
your seat for takeoff.
Oh, look the seat's here
have seat belts...
I got a bitch of a schedule...
How about you relax the
regulations just this once?
Like you people care.
November. Nine. Seven. Four. Eight.
Charlie. Requesting intersection departure.
Intersection departure approved.
Winds fly to 15.
Taxi to position Bravo,
intersection runway 911.
Roger, nine left.
Quest 19 heavy at Gate 10.
Request push-back.
Roger Quest 19 heavy cleared
to push from Gate 10.
I made reservations for you at
the Coach House for Thursday.
No, no, no, Sharon
I can't stay at
the Coach House at Squall
Valley. It doesn't have a gym.
How many times do I
have to tell you?
Book me at the Regent.
Okay I'll call the Regent
but the last time you
stayed there you said
you hated the concierge
and to never book
you there again.
So I thought at least at the
Coach House they had...
Push 19. Clear for taxi.
Cross 19 heavy.
I got my N9748 Charlie
pulling at intersection
for clearance.
November, 9748, Charlie, hold at
intersection for heavy jet, Freedom 86
Control. 9748 Charlie,
I don't see any traffic
to my left.
Here you go.
Freedom 86, Clear to take off.
Freedom 86 Rolling.
Thank You Sir.
Quest-19, have you pulled
short of nine left?
Quest-19 heavy.
Prepare for takeoff
middle section.
Roger. Rolling.
Ground four and eight.
Yep, go ahead.
What the hell are you guys
doing, opening nine right?
I'm not even off
the strip yet.
What? Let me locate
the supervisor.
Quest-19 heavy,
cleared for takeoff.
Quest-19 heavy, rolling.
This is cool.
Tighten your seat belt.
Set thrust.
80 knots. No flags.
V, one, rotate.
turn right.
Heading 0-4-0.
Roger that. Turning right
Quest-19 turn
right immediately.
Quest-19, right turn.
What the hell is he doing?
Wait, 48 Charlie,
turn right immediately.
- Warn. Warn.
- Climbing.
- Again, turn right immediately.
- Right turn.
Right turn.
My head!
Good god. What was that?
It's a bomb.
Quest-19, what is your status?
Full power.
Climb rate?
2900 feet per minute.
No change.
Nose up.
Quest-19, what is your status?
Please acknowledge.
No change.
We'll be fine.
We'll be just fine.
Hang on to me.
I want my mom.
Everyone listen up.
The pilot will tell us
what happened.
Until then, I want each of you
to take your neighbor's hand.
- Breathe.
- Help.
- What was that?
- We've been hit.
Hit? What do you mean, hit?
I know the feeling,
okay? We've been hit.
Deselect hydraulic number one.
Quest-19, what is your status?
Deselect number two.
Banking right.
Banking left.
It's turning.
Get on the pedals with me.
Left first.
And now.
- Nothing.
- Right full pedal, now.
Quest-19, I observe
an erratic flight path.
Please pass any request to us.
Quest 19, what is your status?
Please acknowledge.
I don't have time to explain.
Pull back to 1-4-0-9.
We are going down a knot.
We're going to stall.
Maximum thrust.
Steady at 1-4-5.
Put it back after 1-5-0 knots
and turn off those damn alarms.
Start. Hydraulics.
- Normal all systems.
- Check the back.
- Rear cabin.
- Everybody in one piece back there.
Shaken up, but secure.
What happened?
We don't know yet.
Any damages?
Just food spilled everywhere.
Structural damage?
It's hard to tell.
There's no holes,
that I can see.
Look, I want everybody in their seats.
I want everybody strapped in.
Ladies and gentleman.
I've just spoken
with the captain.
At this time, we recommend that you stay
securely fastened with your seatbelts.
Control, this is Quest-19.
I have no response
on our pitch or yaw.
Eight alarms are working.
Below 1-5-0 knots. I've stall warnings,
and heavy vibrations.
I've marginal control
over altitude.
We can only climb.
I can't get the nose down.
I cannot get the nose down.
I am guessing that our elevators
are jammed in the up angle.
All we can do at the moment
is maintaining
climb in nearly full throttle.
We have 290 souls on board.
Weighing more than
500,000 pounds.
Quest-19, this is Jack Eberly,
Airfield Manager.
Captain, we are getting reports of a
light aircraft break up in your space.
Presume a possible collision.
We'll standby for you.
Feel free to brainstorm.
You said that you knew the
feeling of being hit.
Is that how you got hurt?
What else do you want to know?
My social security number,
my blood type.
It's A+.
Remember it. You may be asked.
Ladies and gentlemen,
this is the Captain.
I understand your concern.
Please stay calm.
The impact you felt was from
contact with smaller aircraft.
We have damage, but don't worry.
We are solidly in the air.
Just sit in your seat with
your seatbelt fastened,
and I'll get back to you
in a minute with an update.
We'll try to have you all
home for dinner.
They'll be home all right.
They'll be home the hard way.
Knock it off Bouchard.
We'll get out of this Connie.
Just need a minute
to think it through.
You can think it
till you are blue in the face.
But there's nobody in this
cockpit who is trained
to bring down
a crippled aircraft.
Lucky, we are ascending
at 300 feet-per-minute.
At that rate, we're going to climb right out
of the density that keeps this plane up.
And then I guarantee you
we're going to go into a spin that you
are not going to be able to correct.
- I'm aware of that.
- We are burning fuel like a bonfire.
If you have to keep these
turbines in sustained over speed
- they're going to blow apart.
- So, you passed physics.
Is that what you want me to tell the
passengers, that the computer failed?
- It's up to us now.
- Shut the hell up you two.
We have enough problems without
you turning this into a cockfight!
He's right, Lucky.
We need help.
Take the wheel.
Control, I want a full patch
with the following people ASAP.
Chief Engineer at Gallant aircraft.
They're in Connecticut.
Lieutenant Colonel Frank O'Hearn at
Malcolm Air Force space, in Idaho.
- Hurry it up. We're burning fuel like...
- Call this in now.
Roger. Working on it. What is
your fuel endurance, Captain?
Stand by.
Way we're going, we figure
we'll be dry at 0-5-2-5-Zulu.
2 hours and 25 minutes to a
flame out. Roger that.
The airport is clear.
All flights diverted.
Captain, you have our
full attention.
Suggest you spiral as you climb
and stay in our airspace.
Beginning a five mile turn.
Why yeah. That'd be a good idea.
Also I'd like to add Bakersfield.
Mr. Pryce.
There's an emergency
call for you.
Actually they...they asked for the
Chief Engineer, but I thought...
What is it Margaret?
A 270 has been involved
in a mid-air collision.
By God.
Assemble the crash team.
- The plane's still in the air sir.
- Get them.
Colonel, telephone.
I'll be right back.
Colonel Frank O'Hearn here.
Captain Singer, we have
the three-way hookup now.
We've briefed them
on your situation.
- Frank, you on?
- Yeah, Lucky, it's me.
I figured the next time I heard
from you it'd be over a beer.
I owe you one, Frank.
This is Ian Pryce,
Chairman of Gallant aviation,
speaking from
Bristol, Connecticut.
At my side is
the Chief Engineer
and designer of the
Gallant 270, Henry Gibbons.
All right.
This is Captain Lucky Singer.
My first officer is
Connie Phipps.
Captain George Bouchard
is in the jump seat.
Patched in from Idaho is
Lieutenant Colonel Frank O'Hearn.
An old friend of mine.
The best flier
I've ever known.
We're now passing
through 8700 ft.
At 1-5-0 knots,
at nearly full power.
Visibility, one-half mile.
All we can do is climb.
At the current burn rate we will be
out of fuel in 2 hours and 10 minutes.
Turbine temps are rising fast, so we are
in danger of blowing up the engines.
I need all the ideas
you've got.
I need them now.
Or everybody on this airplane
has got a big problem.
Come on, baby.
Passing through 9,000 ft.
Let me tell you gentlemen
a story.
It was once a flight with
90 coin collectors on board.
Sitting way in the back.
When the plane took off - I like a good
story as much as the next man, Captain,
but right now we want to
track your fuel displacement.
Well, let me finish.
When the plane took off,
the nose popped up.
It just wouldn't handle
right at all.
So, the pilot turned around
and landed.
But he couldn't
find anything wrong.
'Till he realized that every one
of those coin collector fellows
was carrying over 60 pounds of
precious coins in their carry-ons.
This is fascinating, Lucky.
Do I have time for a smoke?
Mike, Frank, listen.
That's over 5,000 pounds of
unreported weight in
the tail of the airplane.
It upset the
center of gravity.
Once they spread those collectors up,
the plane took off fine.
Captain, unless there's a
point to this...
We've got to do the
same thing.
We got to get
everything heavy, forward.
I got to get the nose down,
otherwise we're going to keep
climbing until this plane vaporizes.
Air to air transfer.
Heavy tools and saws.
We cut up gallies, the seats,
anything heavy, and move it
forward along with the passengers.
Did you say an
air to air transfer?
Roger. We don't have the
necessary tools on board.
But, you can't open a
door in a 270 in flight.
Nope. We're going to have to pop the
emergency hatch here in the cockpit.
It's the craziest idea I've heard
of since the barn back in Kansas.
It'll work in theory.
- Hell I like it.
- Let's hope it adds up.
All you people work on it.
I'm going to move my passengers
forward and check on the damage.
Lucky, what are you
going to tell them?
Right now,
as little as possible.
Bring in heavy equipment through
the escape hatchet at 10,000 feet?
Don't you think this is maybe
just a little impractical?
An air to air transfer with
a passenger jet.
Never been attempted.
Even if we knew how to do it.
Which we don't.
There isn't enough time.
Where will they cut?
Does this pilot think he's
a structural engineer?
Well, what's our idea?
We don't have one, yet. But the answer
is not going to come from this guy.
He's not a tactician.
He's a cowboy.
But, he's our cowboy now.
- God, it's Anchorage all over again.
- No.
Sir, with all respect.
Anchorage was never
proven to be a design flaw.
- Not yet.
- It won't be.
And clearly neither is this.
Forget the pilot.
If we have to rewrite the
book, it has to come from us.
Well, I suggest you find a
pen, and start writing now.
Yes, Sir.
Get me P. R.
We're just gonna take a look,
we're under control. Everything's fine.
I'm traveling with 10
children that are not my own.
What shall I tell them?
What have you
told them so far?
To try and stay calm.
To listen to what
the captain said.
To have faith.
Well, ma'am, I'd say
just trust in yourself.
Because that's the
right thing to do.
- What's your name?
- Crystal.
This is my son, Adam.
Hey, Adam.
What's your mom tell you to do
when you are in a tight spot?
That's good.
You know what I do?
I go to work.
So, what do you say,
we both do our thing and...
...I'm sure it'll be fine.
Captain, can you tell us
anything, Sir?
I'm telling you.
I'm standing on nine right.
And the guy buzzes
me at 100 ft.
It came out of the
Romeo intersection.
Had to.
If you guys really think
this runway is closed,
someone's way screwed up.
Son of a bitch!
That idiot took off
from nine right.
Nobody in this tower knew that
plane was on nine right, did they?
Because if they did,
I want to know about it now.
He was my blip, Jack.
He requested an intersection
departure and I cleared it.
I never said right.
Jack, I didn't mean right,
and I never said right.
All right, then that's it.
Joy, give Carl a break.
Carl, it could happen to
any of us aside.
You all right?
All right listen up.
Move everyone as far forward as possible.
Fill any empty seats.
Excuse me Sir. The Captain needs
all the passengers to move forward.
- What's the projection?
- I've estimated the structural damage
- and put into the program.
- Let me see it.
Run it.
- Cockpit.
- Connie.
Pull back on the
throttles a bit.
Put it back where it was.
What is it?
I'll be right up.
Start over.
Program in
a radical change in the center
of gravity to mimic a massive
shift in the load
weight forward.
Say, 10,000 pounds.
The power is pushing
us one way.
The drag on the tail
pulling the other.
This airplane is coming apart.
We'll be ripped in half.
- Excuse me, Captain?
- You should stay in your seat, Sir.
Listen, I got my crew
on board.
There's three of us, we're
all riggers down from Canada.
These boys know how
to take care of themselves.
Anything they can do to help?
- Maybe, what's your name?
- Tim.
Tim, there's another one of
these in the rear galley.
- Get your men and meet me there.
- Right.
My, what big eyes
you have grandma!
And the wolf said all the
better to see you with.
There are reports of a
possible mid-air collision.
Witnesses say that parts
of a private aircraft
fell from sky less
than an hour ago.
And officials believe a second plane,
Quest Airlines flight 19,
was involved in the incident
and is still in the air.
The question seems to be,
"For how long?"
Let's go boys, Captain needs
our help.
All right - Now this paneling is cosmetic,
but underneath
there are hydraulic lines running
horizontally. So, we have to be careful.
Here we go!
Keep the weight under 100 pounds and bring
everything that will cut, bend or shred.
On a double gentlemen your grandmother
could be on that airplane.
Let me take a look.
- Damn.
- She's buckling.
Sir, I've got to get to the cockpit.
We're under control.
Excuse me, Captain! Don't give me that.
You can check squadron.
- Wait a minute.
- Please! Please!
What I want to know is,
what is an army helicopter
with a 30mm chain gun
doing on our left way?
- What's your name?
- Duke Houston.
Excuse me, Mr. Houston.
I'll check it out.
Are we gonna crash?
Yeah, I'd say there's a
very good chance of that.
- Cockpit.
- Connie pass me through to control.
Well, that's not very fair,
you know.
I've been dead for ten years,
I just divorced and
now I have to die for real?
Not fair.
I know about carrying dead weight.
That's not fair, that's for sure.
Quest 19, this is Jack Eberly -
What the hell are you guys doing?
You put another aircraft
into this space, our
turbines blow, and we
take 'em down with us.
The military wants to help,
That helicopter is the closest ship to you.
It's pretty dark, but they could try
to assess any damage they could see.
- All right, all right. Give us the report.
- Roger.
- You said a chain gun right?
- That's right.
- How come you know so much about a 30mm?
- I flew choppers in Vietnam.
What I'm going to say has to
stay between us right now.
This is Patty,
she's all right.
- Miss.
- Sir.
Hear me out Duke, this ship
is coming apart.
The collision jammed the elevators
in a full up-pitch angle.
- That means we can only...
- Means you can only climb.
Right. And the drag, in the
tail is pulling her apart.
How big a hole would a
30mm put in our covering?
The size of your fist.
Do you think that pilot could shoot
some holes in our outboard flippers?
Reduce the drag,
slow the turbines, maybe...
Maybe even bring the
nose down.
What do you think?
I think if he's got the ammo,
we shoot some more holes in this aircraft.
Lucky, we have company.
Quest 19 to army chopper,
this is Captain Singer. Do you read?
-5-5-5 Quest 19.
- Do you have any live ammo onboard?
That's affirmative, Sir!
They pulled us off an exercise for this.
Do you know what I mean
when I refer to our elevators?
I'm fully qualified to fix
wings, Sir.
And from what I can see your
flippers are locked in the up.
You figured.
Here's what I want you to do.
I want you to shoot some holes
through our elevators.
but you've got to do it
without hitting our trim tabs.
I might need 'em later.
- Stand by.
- Shoot at our tail? My god, Singer.
We've got to reduce the drag, or the
turbines are going to blow up any minute.
Yeah, but what if he misses,
what if he hits the fuel tank?
George, go ahead and calculate the odds,
but it's my call and I'm making it.
Ladies and gentlemen,
this is the captain speaking.
If you look out the left side of the plane,
you'll see a military helicopter.
Do not be alarmed. I'm going to coordinate
an unusual maneuver with this aircraft.
I'm going to ask him to create some holes in
the tip of our plane, by shooting his guns.
- Holes?
- Once we reduce the drag in this way,
we'll be one step closer
to home.
Give your seat belts and extra
tug, and hang on.
- Quest 19, clear to shoot.
- Quest 19, fire at will.
Never say never, huh?
Okay, here we go, folks.
Brace yourselves.
It's okay, you'll be
all right.
- Captain.
- Fire! We have a fire in the galley.
Standby. We've got a fire,
hit the douser.
- It's not stopping, Lucky!
- All right, stay back.
Lucky, this thing is
growing fast.
The galley is going.
Stand by, keep reporting
to me.
It's not going out.
What the hell is going on?
The flame retardant must be flowing out
the tail. That means there's a leak!
Sucking it outside,
instead of to the fire.
- It's not stopping, Lucky!
- Okay, we are hitting the second bottle!
Hit the other bottle.
It's okay everybody.
- Where's your hand extinguisher?
- It's right up there.
The fire is out Lucky.
The fire is out.
- Fire is out.
- Oh, thank God.
What's that smell?
Pasta primavera. You're
standing in dinner.
Folks, this is the Captain.
The fire is out, I repeat, the fire is out.
- Lucky, look at the air speed!
- Yeah, the nose.
- Down five degrees!
Yeah mamma, yes!
The climb rate is down to
100 feet per minute.
Okay, pull slowly back
on the throttle.
'Till you get a stick shake,
then bump it up a bit.
RPM's down. That's good.
Well, Gallant, we got the nose
down some. What have you got?
Bad news Captain,
the computer model shows
that your weight transfer
plan won't work.
Well, I suggest you stop
telling us what won't work
...and come up with something
that will dammit, and quick!
Hello folks, you probably felt
our nose come down some.
- We're looking better every minute.
- We're still headed up.
So don't change your plans for that dinner.
I'll keep you updated.
He's the pilot, what's he
gonna do? Tell us the truth?
It's now or never.
I'm going to the washroom.
Well, his kidneys are working,
gives me hope for his brain.
How'd you get yourself into
this one, hot shot?
You know what you are?
You are lucky!
Bouchard, help me get
this hatch open.
- You're going down the oxygen hold?
- Yeah.
- What are you going to do?
- Unlock the seal of the rear wheel.
- Rear wheel?
- There's nothing wrong with the nose gear.
Contol, I've got an idea
how to get us out of this!
- Is everybody on, Pryce?
- We're here, Captain Singer.
Yeah, I'm here Lucky,
ten minutes to take off.
- On my way to you.
- No, hold on.
Listen! There was something fundamental
missing from my center gravity idea.
Simplicity, now listen to this: the wheel
well on this bird is basically airtight.
Especially at this altitude.
Now here's what we do.
We fill your tanker with
water. We make an air-to-air
transfer of water to fill the
nose compartment.
The weight will bring the nose down without
compromising the structure of the aircraft.
We'll have to purge the fuel from two
tanks to pick up water, but it might work.
Damn right it will! Bring the hose
from the hatch here in the cock-pit
down to the wheel well. It's a routine
air force air-to-air refilling mission,
- only with water.
- One problem captain.
If the nose does come down when you try to
land, you wont be able to bring it back up.
- You will plough right into the runway!
- That's the beauty of it!
We wait to the last second to bring
the nose gear down, the doors open,
the water spills out,
the nose flares, bingo!
Perfect landing!
- Hell with it, it'll work!
- Your timing will have to be perfect.
This is not the time to question
my flying abilities, Mr. Pryce.
No, No, Captain, I don't mean
to offend.
Don't worry Mr. Pryce, there's no
known way to insult Captain Singer!
Gibbons here,
what altitude you are at right now?
We're passing 22,000
There is very little pressure outside,
by the time we set this up.
you're gonna be even higher.
When you blow that emergency
hatch up above your head it
will be about 30 below up there
A 100 knot wind is gonna cut
through plane like a knife
you'll freeze to death inside
two minutes.
Arctic suits.
Standard air-force issue.
You got any, Frank?
I can help you out of
mothballs in five minutes.
Okay, can you attach the suits
with the hose to your solid boom?
Fly it to us in the same pass.
Maybe, I'll have to have to
defeat the fuel boom interlock,
but if I rig a little drogue shoot on the
end of the water hose, she might just fly.
What about oxygen?
Will you have enough?
The supply is only meant to last till a
pilot can dive below 12,000 a minute or so.
But it will take you several
minutes to do all this.
Look, I can't solve all the problems,
what the heck you guys do?
Work on it. In the meantime let's
get the tanker rig in the air.
- What do you say, Frank?
- I'm on my way
I'm concerned about their
220 people needs a
lot of oxygen.
Get busy figuring out
how much and how fast.
Folks this is the captain. We are working
out a landing plan now with the airport.
We're going to dim the lights now
in the cabin to help everyone relax
I'll get back to you.
Larry, we're told it is this front
landing gear well that they hope to fill
with 12,000 pounds of water
which will in turn
bring down the nose of the
disabled airliner.
Of course, they're doing all
this at 180 mile per hour,
at nearly 28,000 feet
in the air,
and with over 200 people
on board.
Excuse me. Stewardess?
- Will this work?
- You bet.
- Money in the bank.
- Lucky?
Answer my question.
I don't know, Connie.
We better believe it will.
With every bone our body,
or we don't stand a chance.
- Where's Connie?
- She's in the oxygen hold.
She wanted to study the controls and
the distances for the rendezvous.
She's a hell of a pilot.
You got yourself a keeper
there, Lucky
I hope they remember to clip the
brass connector off the hose.
- Connie.
- What is it?
There are 200 people up there
depending on me.
My whole life has been
about protecting them.
I know that.
Maybe that's why I've
trained myself to back off.
Not to let anything personal
get in the way of work.
What are you saying?
I love you, Connie!
I haven't said it till now,
I'm a fool.
There's so much going on,
if we get down.
No, no, no,
listen there's a catch.
I've got to put
you in real danger now.
I want you to fly the airplane
during the transfer.
Is that what this is about?
I can fly the damn plane,
Captain, you don't have to...
- ...have to bribe...
- I'm not bribing you!
- You could die.
- We could all die!
I need you to fly the plane while I
get the arctic suits into the cockpit.
I could get Bouchard
to do it but,
I need a flyer down here,
someone who knows his way around.
Who can handle the water hose.
I've got to put you in
that seat unprotected.
The cold will be monstrous.
We're gonna get down.
But you could die, do you understand? I
don't want to do this, but I have no choice.
I understand.
I'll handle it.
Now you tell me,
I just leased an apartment.
We've run and rerun the calculations,
it is what it is.
There just isn't enough oxygen
supply on board to keep
220 passengers
and crew conscious
for the time it will take to
transfer the equipment and water.
Why not?
We can't be expected to design for every
fancy accident in the Universe, sir.
No, Mr. Gibbons, just
real accidents.
Please, God, tell me you have
a solution.
The oxygen flow is regulated by directional
valves in the hold below the cockpit.
It can be directed to certain parts of the
passenger cabin, all to the front cabin
- or all to the rear.
- The oxygen can be directed?
Yes, to make it last longer
in one area.
Because once they depressurize
by the time the pilots do all their work and
dive to 12,000 feet, where they can breathe.
The oxygen for 220 people
will have run out.
We could however
sustain approximately
180 people during that time.
Are you suggesting I move 40
people to the rear cabin and
cut off their oxygen supply?
40 people are going to
suffer from lack of oxygen
one way or another.
Some may die, yes.
And you want me to pick the people who
will die? It's going to be hell up there
freezing cold, powerful winds and probably
a controlled crash landing at best.
- The old and the weak will not be...
- This is a decision for
the Captain to make, he is ultimately
responsible for those people.
For God's sakes you can't burden him
with this now! He has enough to do.
So you want me to play God?
Someone has to.
The tanker will trail a net
with the arctic gear.
Frank will dangle
the net above the cockpit.
When it's in place, I'll pop
the hatch.
When that happens
the force of the wind and the drop in the
pressure will be so great that you guys
will have to fight
your way in here.
We'll have 1 minute to get
the net into the hatch
unload, get the suits on,
before we get frostbite or worse.
-1 minute?
-1 minute.
Fortunately we will have
2 bottle of O2 for all of us.
During that minute, Connie
will fly the plane.
So the priority is to get me into
a suit and flying the plane.
So you can yank her out of the
seat and get her into a suit.
Otherwise she will
freeze to death.
Alright, here's the drill.
I will direct the tanker
into position.
The tanker will thread
the hose through the hatch.
You gentlemen will take it and guide it
into the hole where Captain Bouchard
will offload the water. Once the water is
offloaded, I want you to get the hell out
of the cockpit because when the tanker pulls
the hose out of the plane it's going to
fly around like a steel snake. It will
take a swipe at everything in its path.
Now Connie and I can
control the plane, but
once I blow the hatch,
I can't repressurize.
There's a limited amount
of oxygen.
So I have to get
the plane down quickly.
Otherwise, we're all going
to die anyway.
Any questions?
Alright, let's go aft.
Once I've talked to
the passengers
explained what's going to happen, smile,
make it sound like a piece of cake.
C'mon, smile!
Let's do it.
I'll clear a path.
Hey, George?
Listen, umm
netting that hose
is going to be a bitch.
If you want
I could get one of
the riggers to do it.
No, I'll do it.
Flying by your gut, huh?
- Quest 19?
- This is Quest 19, go ahead.
This is chief engineer
In order to ensure the oxygen
supply to both cabins,
you have to open
the directional valve.
Directional valve,
where is that?
Below, in the oxygen hold
there's an orange lever
marked "Aft cabin".
- Pull it to the far left.
- Far left.
And may I suggest, that you move the old
and weaker passengers to the rear cabin?
The cold and force of the wind
will be minimized there.
Good Idea, we're on it.
Gallon aviation says to
move the orange lever marked,
"Aft Cabin" to the far left to open
the flow of oxygen to both cabins.
Alright, far left,
When the masks come down, put them over
your nose and mouth and breathe normally.
If you have a sweater or a jacket,
I suggest, you put it on now.
Captain? First officer.
Yea, Connie?
Gallon, suggests we put
the older and weaker...
...passengers in the aft cabin.
Should be less wind and cold.
- Hey, Lucky?
- What?
Let's move the children too,
with their parents.
- Good idea.
- Will the weight matter?
Some but it's not worth the risk freezing
some kid's feet. I'll take care of it.
we'd like the children
and the seniors to move to
the back of the airplane
it'll be much warmer there.
Keep your partner's hand,
no shoving, no running.
Captain, the first officer says,
the tanker is two minutes out and closing.
On my way.
Here, I can help
you with that ma'am.
About time Air Force,
never can find a waiter when you need one.
Yeah, there was a backup at the bar,
I hear you need a drink.
Yep, about 4000 gallons.
- Is that with an olive or without?
- No olive.
Not shaken. Not stirred.
- Releasing the valve.
- Make it quick!
- Connie, fuel time?
- About 30 minutes left.
- Altitude?
- Approaching 27,000.
I'm gonna have to drop this
thing like a stone.
C'mon baby, try for papa,
try for papa!
All right, Lucky,
I've dropped.
Captain Singer, have the older
passengers been moved to the aft cabin?
Stay off the radio.
They must be moved, Sir.
Yes, they've been moved,
stay off the radio.
Ladies and gentlemen, this is
Captain Singer
I'm now going to drop
the overhead oxygen masks.
Slip them on as the cabin attendants
have instructed and breathe easy.
We're doing fine.
Okay, Frank, ease her down.
That's good, you're okay.
Keep your speed right there,
Lucky, hold her steady.
Lucky? Something's wrong.
Gallant sent me down here to change
the flow of oxygen to both cabins.
So what?
He had me move the aft
cabin lever to the left.
The hell you talking about?
Think about it, the valve should
already be open to the whole plane.
It would only need to be changed to close
the flow of oxygen, not to open it.
But there are passengers back there,
children, why would we cut the flow?
Why would we...?
...Oh my God, they're going to
sacrifice those people.
The lever closes the valve,
it doesn't open it!
Pryce tell me I'm hearing
this wrong.
Tell me, you bastard, you're not
sacrificing a single person on this plane!
The computers say we can't sustain everyone
to the 12,000 foot level, Captain.
There isn't enough oxygen for
We had to choose.
We've done the responsible thing.
Like hell you have!
You have no idea how fast I'll get this
plane down. There's no possible way
for you to know how thin the air
will be from this moment on.
'Cause it's in my hands,
they're my passengers!
And I'm not going to let
them die, do you read me?
I read you loud and clear,
turn that valve back.
Oxygen open, Lucky.
Thanks, George.
Hey Frank, ease it back
two degrees.
Two degrees.
Hold that altitude.
Ease back on the power,
we'll hold steady.
- Steady!
- Too fast Frank!
It's okay, it's okay.
It's on screen.
Hang on, folks.
Decompression is coming
in a few seconds.
Tim, you ready?
Grab it!
Get him out, get him out.
C'mon, reel it in or you'll be colder
than the Mayor's ass in Idaho.
Pull on the hose.
Grab it!
I got it!
They have less than 30
seconds to get those suits on
or they will begin to freeze.
And if the body becomes dysfunctional
from the cold of course.
We're being told that there's
little chance of survival.
I can't get her up!
Is she all right?
Tanker, what's happening
with the hose?
We're fighting a head wind
Lucky, just hold on.
- Lucky! Lucky!
- Force back, force back.
That's good, keep it coming.
- Now!
- Now!
Water, water, water.
- How much passenger oxygen is left?
- Six minutes.
The water should be flowing into the wheel
well at the rate of 500 gallons a minute.
If the extra weight doesn't
force the nose down.
- She okay?
- She ain't moving.
I'm fine.
Where's the cockpit?
- Are you alright?
- I'm okay.
- Get out.
- I can stay.
Get out, I don't want you in here
when the hose goes flying out.
C'mon, baby, c'mon, c'mon
nose down, nose down,
nose down.
n ose down,
nose down baby, c'mon.
The nose should definitely have
started to come down by now.
What the hell's going on?
Lucky, it's almost full.
Nothing, I've got no
effect here.
All right, keep it coming,
keep the water coming.
Keep the water coming Frank,
more water, more water.
C'mon baby, c'mon, c'mon, c'mon, nose down,
nose down, nose down, nose down.
Dammit, down, nose down!
More water.
Got him.
Grab him!
The nose is coming down!
Okay, take care of him!
What's happening?
- It's coming down.
- Then you think it'll work?
It ain't over yet.
Stop the water, Frank.
Retract, retract.
Get down!
The computers are out!
- Cockpit.
- No oxygen.
- No, oxygen.
- There's no oxygen in the back!
Whatever it takes,
we're going down!
Go on dammit, down!
It'll take them 2 minutes
to dive to 12,000.
They won't last that long.
Down, come down!
Oh, baby!
You did it!
Breathe deeply,
ladies and gentlemen, breathe!
Still the luckiest dang kid
I know!
All right that's better.
Put them on final.
Nice work hard head,
have a drink.
George, George?
I'm coming!
- You all right?
- I'm fine, just get us down.
Is he gonna make it?
Don't ask me for any
I don't know how he can get
this thing down in one piece.
Duke, your attitude sucks.
I got that from my daughter.
That's affirmative,
they are on approach now.
Carl? Quest 19,
it's your plane.
- You don't want me, Jack.
- The hell I don't.
You're the best we've got,
the most experienced.
But if you can't handle this,
you tell me now.
Current air speed,
approximately five miles west.
Quest 19 cleared for
straight in approach.
Tower, I've got to time
the gear down exactly.
Can you count down
my altitude for me?
I'm not sure these instruments
are correct anymore.
Erm, roger that, you're about
four miles out, 4800 feet.
Visibility five miles.
Broken clouds. We have
emergency vehicles on the way.
Ladies and gentlemen,
please assume the
emergency landing position.
That's it sir, cross your arm,
brace yourself on the seat in front of you.
When do you think
we should dump?
- I'd say now.
- George?
- Now.
- Let's do it.
Landing gear, down.
Please go down.
No light, I don't have a light to
affirm gear down, Lucky, I think
the water maybe interfering.
Quest 19,
we'll confirm visually.
On it, Juan, I need confirmation
of gears down as she approaches.
Roger, I'll call as soon as
I see her out of the sky
I see her, I see her.
Is the gear down?
Gear down and water flushing out
of the nose wheel like Niagara.
Quest 19, visual confirmation,
your gear is down.
Yes, I can feel it,
the nose is coming up.
She's coming in too fast.
She's coming in too fast.
Too fast!
Quest 19,
you're coming in too fast.
- Reduce speed, maintain visual.
- I can't control her.
300 feet.
- You're gonna hit hard.
- Stay in one piece baby!
Duke, are you alright?
Duke, are you alright?
My leg won't move.
Who'd have said
that before we landed?
It's 2 O'clock in the morning,
don't you folks have anything better to do?
Nothing more
important than this.
We were a really good team,
you and me, I prayed really hard.
Hey, couldn't have done it
without you.
So what do you want to do now?
Breakfast? Garage sale?
Oh, I want to go home
with you, Captain Singer.
Well that's tonight.
What about next June?
What are you suggesting?
Marriage, to each other!
I'd figured next June.
Umm, how's your weekend?
Ahh, I think I'm free.
You know, my mother always said,
I was lucky.