“There’s no reason to become alarmed, and we hope you’ll enjoy the rest of your flight. By the way, is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?”
A former fighter pilot (Robert Hays) in love with a stewardess (Julie Hagerty) must take over a plane when its pilots (Peter Graves and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) fall ill from food poisoning.
Genres, Themes, Actors, and Directors:
- Airplanes and Pilots
- Disaster Flicks
- Robert Stack Films<
- Satires and Spoofs
Response to Peary’s Review:
As Peary notes, “much of the humor” in this “ambitious, amusing spoof” by the Zucker brothers (previously known for 1977’s Kentucky Fried Movie) “comes from exaggeration of cliches” as well as “the fact that everything said is taken literally”. When “the shit hits the fan”, for instance, we see this actually happening; and when a stewardess (Hagerty) is asked whether she’s prepared to “face some unpleasant facts”, she answers truthfully: “No.” While this type of humor could easily become tedious, it rarely does; instead, scene after scene has us howling with sheepish laughter. Over the years, Airplane! has become a cult favorite, with certain lines — “And don’t call me Shirley” — instantly memorable. As Peary puts it, “the gags come fast and furiously and it’s amazing how many are funny.”
Redeeming Qualities and Moments:
Yes. Airplane! remains one of the most consistently amusing satires ever made, and merits repeat viewing by all film fanatics.
(Listed in 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die)