DVD Review: TWA Flight 800

Conspiracy Theory?

TWA Flight 800 might ring a bell. It's the real life flight that the film Final Destination was based off of. It was a subject in the series Seconds from Disaster, which you can view on youtube here. There's also another documentary called Silenced available on youtube here. It is arguably part of a giant conspiracy theory.

I came into this film with an open mind. I had seen Seconds From Disaster, and I'm not expert in that field, but I accepted the findings. What I find kind of interesting about TWA Flight 800 the documentary is they don't even explain how the NTSB came up with their report in the first place. They say catastrophic engine failure, but they don't go into the same details that Seconds From Disaster did. What this documentary wants you to believe is that not one, or two, but THREE missiles shot this commercial airliner down. Three. Mind you, they don't actually say "three missiles" until the last few minutes of this flick. (right after the narrator gives us a totally irrelevant sob story about how he lost his mother when he was a child.)

I'm sorry, you had me going until just there. The Missile defense has been brought up several times before. Many eye witnesses saw what they thought was a missile shoot up and explode near the plane. The NTSB report didn't interview any of the witnesses during the trial. (Which admittedly, is a little weird) but they explain that what they thought these witnesses saw was part of the plane ascending after the explosion. (They show a graphic of how the nose of the plane blew off immediately, while the rest of the body shot up, then fell back down.) I would be willing to believe the missile theory if it was just one missile, but not three. Another thing this documentary doesn't address is "Why?" Why would our government cover this up? If it was a missile, and it simply was a mistake, why not own up to it like they did when they accidentally shot down that Iranian airliner? Why fire 3 missiles at a commercial aircraft? I cannot think of a good reason. Can you? Could the government really get 100's of people (because that's what it would take, wouldn't it?) to actually keep their mouths shut?

I think the people that made this film have nothing but good intentions. My heart breaks for the families that lost their loved ones, and feel that they still have their questions unanswered, but the way this documentary is presented comes off as more of a "tin foil hat" theory than a good engaging documentary. It's almost like they bait and switch you by having the "big reveal" be that there are THREE missiles instead of the alleged one. It is far better than Silenced, which seems like it was put together by hearsay. ("So and so TOLD me this." "I'm paraphrasing here but.." "All of these pilots said this." with no names given. It's just "law" that all boats go assist with a rescue mission, this boat drove away from the scene) They also state that "no one saw the head of the plane fall off then the body shoot up." Yeah, because the human eye allows us to see things flying 17,000+ feet in the air clearly.

Recommended: Yes, I would recommend watching this and Seconds from Disaster to compare if you have the time or interest. I stop from calling this a good documentary, but it is somewhat interesting.

Grade: C-


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