Opening 28 Sep 2006
In his film World Trade Center, Academy award winning director Oliver Stone brings the events to life surrounding the fall of the structure’s twin towers on September 11, 2001. In Stone’s dramatic re-enactment which depicts the magnitude of the loss on that September day, he focuses on two authentic stories of survival and courage.
Sergeant John McLoughlin (Nicholas Cage) and Will Jimeno (Michael Pena), officers with the Port Authority Police Department (PAPD), were part of the first teams to respond to the twin towers situation. Twenty three year veteran, McLoughlin, had never experienced such bizarre misfortune and for the first time in his career, he had no plan up his sleeve to assist in saving lives. If any one man could quickly figure out a strategy it was McLoughlin. Therefore, swiftness to the scene would be essential for his assessment. Jimeno was one of the five volunteers who escorted McLoughlin into the underground shopping mall beneath the North Tower. Information evaluating the damage was sparse among the chaos except for a walkie-talkie blurb mentioning that the second tower had been hit. McLoughlin knew the structures like the back of his hand and figured going up was still their only option and gathered oxygen tanks from the PAPD storeroom. As the team headed toward the elevators the screeching metal sounds force them to reroute and head for the shafts between the two towers. Suddenly, the horrific noise and vibration of the falling building alerted McLoughlin to warn his men to run for their lives. Before they can even think about running, they are thrust into a metal maze twenty feet below the ground. Officers Christopher Amoroso and Antonio Rodrigues were lost. Dominik Pezzulo (Jay Hernandez) and Jimeno were alive, lying near each other. McLaughlin’s voice could be heard twenty feet below them. While Pezzulo was trying to free Jimeno, the impact of the crash from the second tower took his life and he died right in front of his team mate. McLoughlin and Jimeno worked to keep each other alive, hoping for a miracle. Stone’s narrative unforgettably relates the following twelve hours of their world below ground zero, the torment their families endured, and the amazing rescue involving ex-marine staff sergeant Dave Karnes (Michael Shannon). Jimeno and Mclaughlin are numbers 18 and 19 out of the twenty people who were rescued alive. They hope that the movie serves as a tribute to all who perished. (Karen Pecota)