In the film Flight we are introduced to Captain Whip Whitaker (Denzel Washington) a pilot for an airline who has a serious problem with alcohol and drugs. He flies planes for a living and seems to fly better and have more confidence while under the influence of substances. He is a maverick and refuses to take a prescription medication for his addiction. During the movie we watch him as he navigates through some intense turbulence. His co-pilot is worried and anxious but Whip just carries on.
During the turbulence the plane begins to lose altitude. It is not until the plane is about to land that Whip realizes he has been under the influence of drugs and alcohol. He quickly tries to rationalize the crash and blames it on mechanical problems. However, he knows that being under the influence was a contributing factor to the crash and the death of some passengers.
The next day Charlie and Hugh move Whip to a guarded hotel room and forbid him from drinking. However, he is not deterred and raids the minibar. Later he pays a visit to his co-pilot Ken Evans who is in a coma and unlikely to ever walk again.
Whip is forced to make a choice to be sober or face jail time. Fortunately for him and the passengers on his next flight, he chooses sobriety. He is not able to completely overcome his addiction but he does learn how to manage it and control it. This is a very good film that shows the downside of addiction and how hard it is for an addict to admit they have a problem.