Film editor Stuart Baird’s directorial debut is a largely forgettable airplane-hijacking movie with clichéd, two-dimensional characters and a formulaic plot. While the film is admittedly suspenseful at times, some of the scenes that are supposed to build tension come across as obviously contrived, which significantly reduces their effectiveness. What happens at the end of Executive Decision should come as no surprise since the ending is telegraphed early on in the proceedings.
Kurt Russell gives an okay performance in the lead role. Steven Seagal’s role is a small one, making his wooden acting bearable. Perhaps best known for his TV portrayal of Agatha Christie’s Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, David Suchet does a quite good turn as Nagi Hassan, the main antagonist. Halle Berry plays her part convincingly.