It’s human nature to seek solace in the art after an overwhelming tragedy, as it provides us with tools to respond and make sense of it all. After the 9/11 Attack, literature, artworks, and music helped us cope with the world that has been forever changed by it, and cinema and television were not far behind. The Oscar-nominated film ‘United 93’ is one such morsel of entertainment that gave us an understanding of the incredible bravery and sacrifice of the people who are on that flight. Hijacked by terrorists, it was supposed to hit the US Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., but ultimately crash-landed into an empty field in Somerset County, Pennsylvania after the crew and passengers attempted to take back control. In this article, we list 7 other films with similar themes for you to consider and watch. You can watch these films on Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu.
7. The Flight That Fought Back (2005)
A docudrama also based on the events that took place on board UA Flight 93, ‘The Flight That Fought Back’ is Discovery’s attempt to give us a clearer picture of what exactly transpired on that plane that day. Narrated by Kiefer Sutherland, the film is a suspenseful roller-coaster ride, even though you already know about the tragic fate of the crew and passengers. If anything, that hindsight only makes you appreciate more the heroes that these people were.
6. World Trade Center (2006)
Although Oliver Stone’s films tend to be very hit or miss, they are almost always culturally impactful. ‘World Trade Center’, starring Nicolas Cage and Michael Peña, is one of his better movies. It gives the perspective of the first responders about that day. Cage and Peña play John McLoughlin and Will Jimeno, two of the several police officers who were buried under the collapsing South Tower. Despite its visually stunning setting, the film entirely character-driven. It is the performances of its two lead stars, portraying two men trapped under millions of tons of rubble, that take this film to a whole new level.
5. Reign Over Me (2007)
There is a consensus among movie fans that whenever Adam Sandler does a drama film, it’s always going to be something exceptional. In director Mike Binder’s ‘Reign Over Me’, Sandler plays Charlie Fineman, a man who has lost his wife and daughters in the 9/11 Attack. The resulting grief had a deep effect on his mental health, turning him into a reclusive shell of his successful and extrovert former self. One day, he runs into his former college roommate, Dr. Alan Johnson (Don Cheadle), who is unhappy in his own life, being overwhelmed by the responsibilities of his job and family. With the help of the other man, the two begin their journey to find balance in their respective lives.
4. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (2011)
The cinematic adaptation of Jonathan Safran Foer’s 2005 namesake novel, ‘Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close’ tells the story of Oskar (Thomas Horn), a nine-year-old boy with Asperger Syndrome, who embarks on a journey across New York to come to terms with his grief of losing his father on 9/11. The film also stars Tom Hanks and Viola Davis.
3. Neerja (2016)
A poignant Indian Hindi-language film starring Sonam Kapoor and Shabana Azmi, ‘Neerja’ tells the story of the head purser, Neerja Bhanot, whose actions saved the lives of 300 passengers on board Pan Am Flight 73 after the flight was hijacked by the members of Abu Nidal Organization in 1986. The film received global recognition, with many critics praising Kapoor’s performance.
2. Remember Me (2010)
‘Remember Me’ is a romantic drama that follows Tyler (Robert Pattinson) and Alyssa (Emilie de Ravin), two New-York residents who form a connection through a mutual sense of grief. This gradually develops into a romance. However, the film’s climax, which takes place on 9/11, remains controversial as many critics accuse the filmmakers of using the national tragedy to emotionally blackmail their audience.
1. Zero Dark Thirty (2012)
Directed by Kathryn Bigelow, the spy thriller ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ focuses on a CIA agent (Jessica Chastain) hunting down Osama bin Laden. One of the greatest spy thrillers of all time, the film is a hard-hitting portrayal of the efforts to bring the man responsible for 9/11 to justice. The movie not only received the Best Picture nomination at the 2013 Academy Awards but also earned Chastain a Best Actress nod.
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