Out of the Clear Blue Sky: A Flawed But Poingnant 9/11 Documentary
Out of the Clear Blue Sky is a flawed but poignant contribution to the canon of 9/11 documentaries. Director Danielle Gardner, whose brother, Doug, was one of the 658 Cantor Fitzgerald employees who died in the attack, takes up the idiosyncratic tragedy of that firm. Anyone at Cantor who showed up to work and was in the office that day perished; their deaths numbered a fourth of all 9/11 casualties. The firm, also the nation's largest bond trader, though still reeling from the devastation, had to figure out whether to stay in business and how—the bond market reopened just two days later. Gardner ambitiously takes up several elements of Cantor's unique situation, depriving the film of a strong focus. At times it is a business story, a media story, a family story, a political story, and, perhaps above all, the story of Cantor's CEO, Howard Lutnick. By not delving more deeply into any one of these subjects, Gardner loses the opportunity for more profound understanding, something reflected in the title, which could apply to any 9/11 remembrance. As in most documentaries, spliced-in reenactments are unhelpful. Still, what this movie shares is of great consequence, a moving and unlikely story in a tapestry of stories about a tragic and unlikely event.
New York, NY 10003
Get the Film & TV Newsletter
Stay up to date on the best new movies with our critics' latest reviews, interviews and trailers for the films coming to a theater near you each week.
More Film News
- Scott Adkins Plays a Badass Actually Named ‘Colt McReady’ In the Effective ‘Close Range’
- Meet the Pole Who Tried to Warn the World About the Holocaust in ‘Karski & the Lords...
- Jane Fonda Faced Down the Seventies and a Killer in Pakula’s Masterful ‘Klute’
- He’ll Get Your Head Shaking: Surveying the Start of Chung Mong-hong’s (Likely) Great...