Starring: Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Leslie Nielsen, Lloyd Bridges
Directed by: Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, Jerry Zucker
Written By: Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, Jerry Zucker
Rating: PG (US) Running Time: 1 hr 28 min
They don’t make spoofs like this anymore! Airplane! Is an absolute classic! Every scene and shot is filled with layer upon layer of hilarious content. Great visual gags, and some of the most quotable dialog ever written. Timeless too, and just as funny now as it was back in 1980. There’s so much to discover. I’ve watched this film several times over the years, and only on this last viewing did I notice the adult magazine section at the airport was labeled ‘Whacking Material!’ How did I miss that!?
It’s just so silly too. It’s like directors/writers Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, and Jerry Zucker decided no idea was too crazy. So we get inflatable auto-pilots. Jive talking passengers. Airport public address operators arguing over the red/white loading areas and abortion! A smoking section plane ticket, that’s literally smoking! It’s just ridiculous. But in the best possible way.
Airplane is a classic spoof. Not even Leslie Nielsen’s Naked Gun series got this good. More recent spoofs like the Scary Movie series are just not in the same league as Airplane. Be in the mood for a barrage of great quotes and visual gags. When someone says ‘the shit’s going to hit the fan’ – expect to see exactly that!
A regular DVD or streaming show is good enough for this film. Watch this on a nice big TV though as you’ll need to keep an eye out for all the hilarious ideas squeezed into every shot.
Best moments for me:
There are too many to mention. But I especially loved the scenes near the beginning of the film with the name confusion between the 3 pilots. Roger Murdock (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), Captain Oveur (Peter Graves) and Victor Basta (Frank Ashmore). Here’s one exchange between these three men that always cracks me up!
Roger Murdock: We have clearance, Clarence.
Captain Oveur: Roger, Roger. What’s our vector, Victor?
Tower voice: Tower’s radio clearance, over!
Captain Oveur: That’s Clarence Oveur. Over.
Tower voice: Over.
Captain Oveur: Roger.
Roger Murdock: Huh?