Gwyneth Paltrow won the Academy Award for her performance in
“Shakespeare in Love,” enchanted audiences in “Emma” and recently
performed for Prince Charles in London. With such credits to her
name, it is baffling to witness this acclaimed actress in the
little seen film “View From the Top.”
It tells the sad and unfunny tale of a small town girl and her
dreams of becoming a flight attendant. After watching a talk show
interview with motivational speaker and ex-flight attendant Sandy
Weaver (Candice Bergen), Donna (Paltrow) decides to make her dreams
come true and heads to a small airline to begin her life in the
She slowly moves her way up the flight attendant ladder and is
offered a position working international first class to Paris. But
alas, after all her accomplishments, she realizes love is more
important than traveling the world and heads back to Cleveland to
be with her lawyer boyfriend.
The insipid plot is excruciating to sit through, the love story
weak and the acting intolerable. One wonders how Gwyneth could give
such a role a second though.
However, the leading lady is not the only star to blame for this
waste of 87 minutes; Mike Myers, Christina Applegate, Rob Lowe and
Kelly Preston also make appearances. Myers, a flight-attendant
instructor with a massive case of lazy eye, makes for several
bizarre scenes funny only in their complete idiocy. Preston and
Applegate serve as fellow flight attendants who offer nothing more
than eye candy.
Special features include a documentary on the history of the
flight attendant, a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the
film and music from the movie. All are easily skipped after
realizing no more time should be wasted on this disaster of a
One small semi-saving grace of this production is the
soundtrack. Classic ’80s songs and upbeat melodies provide slight
distraction from the inevitable question: Why Gwyneth? Why?
Film: 2 stars.
Picture/Sound: 4 stars.
Features: 2 stars.