Skyjacked (Movie review)

Passengers boarding Global Airways Flight 502

Passengers boarding Global Airways Flight 502

It’s a scenario that’s played out countless times before: a madman hijacks an airliner and threatens the crew and passengers with a bomb if his demands are not met. Skyjacked, released in 1972, takes this idea and runs with it by placing an all-star cast at the mercy of a crazed Vietnam veteran who has a bone to pick with the U.S. Army. The result is an entertaining and technically competent film that, despite some shortcomings I’ll discuss later, is sure to please genre fans. As our story opens… Continue reading

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Forgotten Classics (3 mini movie reviews)

DC-6 prop plane posing as a jetliner in Fate is the Hunter

DC-6 prop plane posing as a jetliner in the movie Fate is the Hunter

There are many well-known air disaster movies. Airport and its sequels come instantly to mind, as does the Abrahams/Zucker Brothers genre parody Airplane! Here are three lesser known movies from earlier decades, when the air disaster genre was considered still to be in its infancy.  If you thought those air disaster stereotypes were old hat in 1970, wait until you see these.

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A Thousand Heroes (Movie review)

Airplane crash drill, with burning school bus posing as wreckage

This is the story of a city fully prepared for any disaster, a commercial airliner which lost all hydraulic systems, an experienced Captain, with almost 300 people on board… brought together on a beautiful day, July 19, 1989. This is A Thousand Heroes, also known as Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232. Continue reading

The High and the Mighty (Movie review)

Parked TOPAC DC-4

Considered by many to be the first “true” air disaster movie (predating Airport by a good sixteen years), William A. Wellman’s The High and the Mighty is a genuine classic. Written by renowned aviation scribe and former pilot Ernest K. Gann and starring such greats as John Wayne, Claire Trevor and Laraine Day, The High and the Mighty is as interesting and enjoyable today as it was in 1954. Continue reading

Rough Air: Danger on Flight 534 (Movie review)

F/O Mike Hogan (Eric Roberts)

There are many films that start off well and seem promising, only to let you down halfway through as they fall into the same clichés and stereotypes we know all so well. Rough Air: Danger on Flight 534 is one such movie. There are some aspects of the story that are accurate and semi-believable, but the rest is the same, recycled garbage we have seen before in a hundred other air disaster flicks. Continue reading