薩利機長:迫降奇蹟(SULLY)

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整部戲,僅得兩處不滿:其一是無厘頭醜化國家運輸安全委員會(National Transportation Safety Board,NTSB)為一群愚昧陰險小人,其二是臨近尾聲時Aaron Eckhart那句故作懶風趣的對白(「[若要重做一次在水面降落之舉,]我會選擇在七月做。」)實在惡頂。

抹黑NTSB,總之政府、財團有關人等,全都要打成奸角,以突出主角之英雄正直。如此處理,固非不能理解,但實在是弱智、淺薄、無聊;再細想這部戲真正的衝突所在,更會發覺如此處理根本毫無必要,拙劣的編劇手法,完全反映撰稿者懶惰馬虎。機長「戰勝」偽NTSB的一段幼稚至極,並令整個調查、聽證會過程變得頗為可笑。

本片的重心,其實是機長Sully(Tom Hanks)事後的內心交戰。抽空去看,或許只是PTSD,但在戲內的脈絡,Sully於緊急狀況決定在水面降落,但事後不停回想,會猶豫,會質疑自己,故在腦海中不停模擬各種可能的場面。這既是其「人味」所在,其實亦是其專業所本。NTSB及其調查的角色,其實只需要作為催化劑,只要平實地作調查,已經可以挑起其思緒,根本不需要寫作奸角。

現實中,NTSB事發兩日後查問Sully,從談話撮要可見,NTSB會特意追問的均為程序、系統、訓練問題(從中摘錄幾段):

“When asked about training for ditching, he said they got familiarization with the QRH. He said he thought that was something that was difficult to practice and he did not recall it in simulator.

When asked about guidance for ditching in company manuals, he said there were things in the manuals about that. He said it was a dichotomy between planned and unplanned landings. He said if it was timed and they could prepare, there was guidance. He said notification, prepare the cabin, direction of landing, wind and sea states, airplane configuration, and land near vessels. He said yes, there was guidance in the manuals about that.

When asked if anything from training was helpful in the current situation, he said “absolutely training has helped”. He said he was trained on fundamental values to maintain aircraft control, manage the situation, and land as soon as the situation permits. He said training on CRM, clear definition of duties, and clear communications of plan and to where headed. He also said the basic rules of airmanship and CRM helped. He said what they learned in training and procedures on aircraft from airbus. He said all they learned in some way contributed to this.”

(見:National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), “Operations/Human Performance Group Chairmen Interview summaries – Flight crew”, p. 13, http://dms.ntsb.gov/public/47000-47499/47230/418999.pdf。)

戲中所描述,想「釘死」Sully的態度實在見不到;而從常理去想,也不會有公務機構會想在那個時候去抹黑Sully,在民眾情緒高漲時跟國民英雄對著幹,簡直是跟自己過不去,哪會有這麼蠢的人?

另一方面,這部戲又是問了一個問題:到底「英雄」這回事有何意義?

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Sully問過幾次,他一生人做過很多事,安全接載過無數乘客,為何他一生人的成就被縮小至那208秒的判斷、行動?雖然結果良好,但若然他的判斷原來出錯?就因為那208秒,就抹去他一生人此前所有工作,摧毀他的事業?倒過來看,若然無發生那208秒,他就不過是一個普通的飛機師,一個普通人;而其實,他由始至終都是同一個人。

到某一幕,match cut渡輪駛離碼頭,見到船長即時下令趕赴救人,到後來各方空群出動,每一個參與其事者,都是英雄。然後,同一個問題又冒出來了,若然無發生這次意外?他們又不過是辛勤工作,做份內事的普通人;但其實,由始至終都是同一班人。如此延伸開去,這意味就變了:每一個做份內事,辛勤工作的人,本身就是英雄。

無任何藝術新意可言,老土至極的傳統價值,不過獨行俠確是手段高明,由Sully的個人掙扎,到問「英雄這回事」,這兩部份拍得味道醇厚,好看。

然後,又要倒回去講那偽NTSB。

戲中那群小人,是絕不科學、更不誠實,Sully只是以誠實、科學的態度應對而勝。偽NTSB指示的電腦及真人模擬測試,撞雀後立即折返,完全不考慮機師需要時間判斷狀況、考慮如何應對,方能實際執行計劃,這明顯不合理、不科學;而且真人模擬示範中,事前練習過十數次,才有示範那次成功,在Sully追問後才透露實情,這是不誠實。問題是,如此作假,實在非常小學雞,大概有中學程度思維,已經看得出問題,如此低程度過招,實在當觀眾弱智。

真NTSB的模擬測試,同樣有「撞雀後立即折返」的部份,但且看其文件解釋測試的目的:

“…In these scenarios, the turn towards the airport following the bird strike was immediate in order to determine, from an aerodynamic point of view, whether the airplane had the performance to glide to a runway from the bird strike location. The immediate turn does not reflect or account for real-world considerations such as the time delay required to recognize the bird strike, and decide on a course of action. These factors are considered in Conditions 2.2c and 2.3c by incorporating a 35-second delay prior to the turn towards the airport.” (emphasis added)

(見:NTSB, “Simulator Evaluations for US Airways A320 Flight 1549 Accident, Ditching in Hudson River, 1/15/09 (NTSB # DCA09MA026)”, p. 3, http://dms.ntsb.gov/public/47000-47499/47230/420152.pdf。)

文件解釋得清楚,「立即折返」只是用作測試飛機的性能,根本不是用來判斷機師行動是否正確的。模擬結果又有否隱瞞呢?為免文章太長,只摘錄模擬「折返機場」場景的部份:

A total of 20 runs were performed in the S22 simulator in which pilots attempted to return to LGA runways 13 or 22, or attempted to land at TEB runway 19. Five of 20 runs (25%) were discarded due to poor data or simulator malfunctions, leaving 15 runs for analysis (6 runs to LGA runway 22, 7 runs to LGA runway 13, and 2 runs to TEB runway 19). Eight of 15 runs (53%) made successful landings. The 8 successful runs were made following an immediate turn to an airport after the bird strike. See Table 1 for details of each run.

Specifically, six runs were made to return to LGA runway 22 immediately following the bird strike. Of those six, two (33%) resulted in a successful runway landing – one using flaps at the pilot’s discretion (condition 2.1a; one additional attempt was unsuccessful) and one using slats only (condition 2.1b; four additional attempts were unsuccessful). Due to inadequate successful landing attempts following an immediate turn after the bird strike, attempts to land at LGA runway 22 after a 35 second delay (condition 2.1c) were not performed.

Additionally, pilots attempted to land at LGA on runway 13. All four pilots successfully landed (100%) on LGA runway 13 following an immediate left turn to the airport following the bird strike (condition 2.2a). Two runs were attempted in which the pilot was required to use slats only on landing on runway 13 (condition 2.2b). One landing (50%) was successful and one landing was not successful, requiring the pilot to ditch in the waters adjacent to LGA. The one attempt to return to LGA runway 13 following a 35 second delay (condition 2.2c) was not successful. No additional attempts were made to return to LGA runway 13.

Finally, two runs were attempted to determine the ability of the airplane to land at TEB runway 19 immediately after the bird strike. In both runs, pilots were able to use flaps at their discretion (condition 2.3a). One attempt (50%) was successful and one attempt was unsuccessful. Due to inadequate successful landing attempts following an immediate turn, conditions 2.3b and 2.3c were not attempted.” (emphasis added)

(見:NTSB, “Simulator Evaluations for US Airways A320 Flight 1549 Accident, Ditching in Hudson River, 1/15/09 (NTSB # DCA09MA026)”, pp. 6-7。)

主持聽證會的Robert L. Sumwalt,非但無在會上質疑Sully,反而… 我本來想講「去片」,但錄影實在太長,不如讀謄本快捷,就來看他如何問Sully(摘錄):

“CHAIRMAN SUMWALT: This event turned out differently than a lot of the situations the Board looks at. Tell me, in your mind, what made the critical difference in this event? How did this event turn out so well compared to, perhaps, other events that we see at the Safety Board?”(p. 46, lines 17-21)

“CHAIRMAN SUMWALT: You testified to Congress — you and I testified on the same day back in February, and you mentioned that the airline piloting profession faces some challenges. I want to make sure — unfortunately, we, at the Board, we see events that don’t have, oftentimes, good outcomes, so what can we extract from your mindset, from the things you’ve learned, to basically hand over to others in your profession?”(pp. 47-48, lines 21-25 & 1-2)

“CHAIRMAN SUMWALT: Thank you. In looking at the CVR transcript and listening, actually, to the CVR, I noticed that you immediately, after both engines were lost, you immediately turned on the ignition; you fairly much immediately started the APU and then commanded for the loss of both engines checklist. Oftentimes — and we may even get some testimony on this later this morning or later today — oftentimes, when somebody is faced with an unusual or surprising situation, there’s a choke factor, there’s a startle response. You did not seem to exhibit that startle response. It was like you knew, you were prepared for this, you knew immediately what to do. What do you attribute that to?”(pp. 49-50, lines 18-25 & 1-4)

“CHAIRMAN SUMWALT: And I think that is so important. I’m trying to get an idea of what your mindset is and how you were there. I can contrast you to a crew that we looked at recently that I mentioned the captain said he was ambivalent. They had an engine fire 800 feet AGL and it took about three and a half minutes before they completed the checklist, which should be a memory item, should be done immediately. So I want to be able to bottle your mindset and be able to make sure that everybody is drinking from that same bottle.

As far as the CRM, and the Threat and Error Management is concerned, what can we learn from your lessons regarding — from CRM and Threat and Error Management?”(p. 50, lines 12-23)

(見:NTSB, “Transcript – Public Hearing Day 1 (06/09/09)”, http://dms.ntsb.gov/public/47000-47499/47230/422295.pdf。)

我相信不用多解釋了。

戲劇,當然不是紀錄片,但問題是扭曲的程度、方向:一、是否合理;二、是否需要。今次似乎兩者皆否。

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簡單評分:

B- -(☆☆☆)/A-(☆☆☆☆★)
(Tom Hanks的部份實在精彩,無論如何扣分,亦有前項分數;而盡量壓下我對上述長篇大論部份的不滿,則或許亦值得後項分數。)

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一時興起,讀文件癮發作,且引Sully兩段說話作結:

“CAPT. SULLENBERGER: Well, if you think I wasn’t startled, you misunderstand. But I think both Jeff Skiles and I have done this long enough and trained long enough to have internalized the values of our profession and to have learned what needs to be done, and so we quickly acknowledged our bodies’ innate physiological reactions, set it aside and began to work on the task at hand.”

(見:NTSB, “Transcript – Public Hearing Day 1 (06/09/09)”, p. 50, lines 5-11。)

“Captain Sullenberger said he “could not be more happy and pleased and gratified that we got 155 people off the airplane and it was due to the professionalism of my crew; Jeff, Donna, Sheila, and Doreen”.”

(見:NTSB, “Operations/Human Performance Group Chairmen Interview summaries – Flight crew”, p. 21。)

(作者網誌:https://imanape.org/

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