Director – Rob Pallatina, Screenplay – Jacob Cooney & Brandon Stroud, Producer – David Michael Latt, Photography – Josh Maas, Music – Christopher Cano & Chris Ridenhour, Visual Effects Supervisor – Glenn Campbell, Makeup – Denise M. Chavez, Effects – , Production Design – Anthony Pearce. Production Company – The Asylum.
Liz Fenning (Alice), Jose Rosette (Thaddeus), Joseph M. Harris (Captain Jack Hanstock), Clarissa Thibeaux (Danika), Shamar Philippe (Brandon), Greg Furman (Ryan), Jesse James D’Angelo (Liam), Justin Hoffmeister (Devon Peck), Paul Logan (Austin), Renee Willett (Anna), Noa M. Pharaoh (Fred), Lisa Goodman (Tanie), Josell Mariano (Hayao)
Pan US 57 takes off on a coat-to-coast red eye flight to New York but soon runs into a storm. One passenger Peck panics after thinking he sees ghostly figures out on the wing and has to be restrained by the sky marshal Thaddeus. Other things proceed to go wrong as maggots are found in the dinners, passengers see ghostly apparitions and there are power failures, while the pilot is forced to make abrupt banks and turns due to the storm. As Thaddeus and the air hostess Alice try to manage panic among the passengers, they come to the conclusion that the flight is haunted.
The airplane thriller genre was big a few years ago. We had thrillers like Turbulence (1997), Red Eye (2005), Flightplan (2006), Non-Stop (2014) and Mayday (2015), while everything was parodied by Snakes on a Plane (2006). The latter in particular gave birth to a series of monsters on a plane films. Down the low-budget end of the spectrum we had such increasingly ridiculous efforts as Flight of the Living Dead: Outbreak on a Plane (2007) with zombies on a plane, Swarm (2007) with ants on a plane and Lost in the Pacific (2016) with mutant cats on a plane. Maybe the nearest to Flight 666 would be the Takashi Shimizu-directed 7500 (2014), a ghost story set aboard a plane flight.
The Asylum is a company that regularly produce low-budget films designed to copy the titles of big-budget releases that are released just as the other work comes out to capitalise on publicity and anticipated interest, something they call Mockbusters. Aside from that, the Asylum regularly produce a series of deliberately ridiculous killer shark films and low-budget disaster movies. Although Flight 666 does not seem intended to fall into any of these categories in particular. Nor does it appear to be any relation to the Iron Maiden album of the same name.
The film consists of a lot of mysterious things happening on a plane. A crazy guy (Justin Hoffmeister) sees mysterious figures forming out on the wings – shades of the Nightmare at 20,000 Feet (1963) episode of The Twilight Zone, later remade as one of the episode of Twilight Zone – The Movie (1983). The onboard salads turn to maggots. People in the bathroom see a ghostly figure in the mirror and are transported down into the hold. A corpse in a red dress walks down the aisle. People hear voice in their headphones, while the word ‘Murder’ appears written in the condensation on one of the cabin windows. It takes a long time before Flight 666 ever gives you any clues as to what is happening, although when it does it eventually solidifies into a reasonable Supernatural Retribution explanation.
A good proportion of The Asylum’s films are poorly made or arrive with a shabby indifference. This is not the case of Flight 666, which is a competently made B movie in all regards. The drama works well, occasional atmosphere is created – the appearance of the dead woman in the red dress walking down the aisle comes with some effect. The cast are all believable in their roles and there is never anything you could point at as being a poor or unconvincing performance.
Rob Pallatina is a regular editor at The Asylum who branched out as a director where he made Fortune Cookie (2016), Alien Convergence (2017), Alien Siege (2018), Nazi Overlord (2018), The Doctor Will Kill You Now (2019) and Airliner Sky Battle (2020) for them.