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Review: The Aviator (2004)

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I read a review one time before watching The Aviator, comparing it to Citizen Kane (one of the highest if not highest regarded piece of cinema in history). Well I don’t know about that, but no doubt about it Leonardo DiCaprio is a superb actor.

The Aviator is a biopic about the eccentric and insanely rich/successful Howard Hughes (DiCaprio). We start things off with his attempt to break into Hollywood and the long process to direct and fund “Hell’s Angels”. After the success of the film, Hughes goes into the flight business, designing, creating, and flying all sorts of planes, breaking records, and working for the military. Besides his successes we also get a look into his sometimes OCD like behavior, and his unsuccessful relationships. The result is a sad look at one of the most powerful persons in the world.

The Aviator presumes you have at least heard the name Howard Hughes. I’ve heard the name before but couldn’t tell you who he was. While it took me a little bit to gain my bearings, I soon began to understand Hughes. It seems to be every bit as epic as Gone with the Wind or Citizen Kane. It has the same kind of grand scope. I was a bit worried half way through, but once Hughes started to break down mentally, I was hooked. The courtroom scenes seemed especially great placing Alan Alda against DiCaprio (made me want to see J. Edgar). My one big problem was Cate Blanchett as Katherine Hepburn. She just seemed really annoying and a bad imitation of her. Not to mention there wasn’t much chemistry between her and Hughes. The fact she won an Oscar for best supporting actress is beyond me. But looking past that, it was a great movie.

My Rating: B+


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