Downfall: The Case against Boeing – Netflix Documentary Explores How Corrosive Greed Resulted In Preventable Deaths

Downfall: The Case against Boeing – Netflix Documentary Explores How Corrosive Greed Resulted In Preventable Deaths

After Inventing Anna, Netflix is dropping yet another true-crime documentary this month. Now we are confused, is this the month of love or what? But we are not complaining because Downfall is a must-watch documentary on Netflix that represents all that is wrong with the global corporate culture now. Rory Kennedy’s documentary investigates the two Boeing plane crashes – Lion Air Flight 610 in 2018 and Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 in 2019. It premiered at the Sundance Film festival before dropping on the streamer on Feb 18. 

Downfall unravels a big shark’s story about greed and deception using interviews, footage, and computer graphics. All things said nervous fliers should not watch the movie as the experience will be more harrowing than enjoyable.

Boeing MAX 737 models were faulty

Scared of their competition, European plane manufacturers Airbus, Boeing was tight to introduce new models that would sell well, but would require no pilot training and would be inexpensive to produce-Max 737. Max 737 had a new built-in flight control system, MCAS, and faulty sensors. Since they weren’t trained Boeing pilots were unable to operate the new software. It led to both the crashes and 346 casualties. Boeing misled their pilots when they told them the control system was the same as their 40-year-old 737 models.

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Blaming the pilots for the catastrophe

To cover the incident, Boeing and the general public blamed the incompetency of the pilots. But two plane crashes, that too new models, within 5 months cannot be a coincidence. Public trust and Boeing’s reputation as one of the most reliable aviation companies were shattered. A further investigation revealed the deception. Footage from the plane’s black box revealed the pilots following all safety protocols. This further indicated complications in the new models. 

Interviews from former employees at Boeing shed light on the change in the company’s culture after its merger in 1997- meticulous design following all safety protocols to cost-cutting to increase stock prices after the Wall Street boom.

It is surprising that a company that was the first to introduce new commercial planes to make air travel affordable for the general public, would years later, put their greed first over the loss of hundreds of lives. 

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