Downfall: Case Against Boeing (2022) film review

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“Downfall” posits that a shareholder-first mentality crept into Boeing at the end of the century, after its acquisition of McDonnell Douglas in 1997. This merger brought the latter company’s ruthless managers into conflict with the First, safety-conscious engineers who founded Boeing to design the world’s best planes. They were proud of this work and feared it would suffer because the executives focused less on manufacturing and more on financial engineering. Their fears were well-founded, but corporate management’s heavy-handed corporate tactics gradually deprived the engineers of their voice within the company. All the while, executives doubled down on cost-cutting measures and wooed stock market investors, sacrificing safety in the name of profit.

This approach continued after these tactics led to tragedy, as Boeing sought to escape responsibility while doing less than it could have to stop the next one. The company’s chilling apathy is presented as a matter of fact by the filmmakers, who know how to build a compelling case without losing their temper, but it’s an element of “Downfall” that shows how Boeing is. became ill.

“Downfall” uses a variety of talking heads to tell this story, from journalists like the the wall street journal‘s former aerospace journalist Andy Pasztor to politicians like Rep. Peter DeFazio, chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, which led a congressional investigation into the crashes. The voices of pilots like Captain “Sully” Sullenberger, who express their shock and anger at Boeing’s decision not to tell pilots about MCAS, are particularly critical.

The film also features interviewees whose stories have been sidelined during accident coverage, including families forced to deal with unfathomable grief and former Boeing employees whose experiences provide insight into the culture. corporate toxic.

Starring Garima Sethi, the widow of Lion Air Captain Bhavye Suneja, who calmly recounts not only the ordeal of discovering her husband’s fate, but also the stench of xenophobia that permeated early reports of the first crash of the 737. Meanwhile, Michael Stumo, whose 24-year-old daughter, Samya Rose Stumo, died in the Ethiopian Airlines crash, emerges through the film’s narrative as an energetic and angsty crusader for justice.

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