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Airplane! (1980) 40th Anniversary presented by TCM

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Robert Hays and Julie Hagerty join panicky passengers, inept ground controllers and an inflatable auto-pilot (named “Otto,” of course!) in the disaster-film spoof voted “one of the 10 funniest movies ever made” by the American Film Institute. Surely you’re serious about attending this special event that includes exclusive insights from Turner Classic Movies.


  • Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • Lloyd Bridges
  • Peter Graves
  • Julie Hagerty
  • Robert Hays
  • Leslie Nielsen
  • Lorna Patterson
  • Robert Stack
  • Stephen Stucker
  • Otto

Atom User Reviews

5.0 out of 5
Verified Review

Still cracks me up after all these years

Jay B



A sometimes silly, occasionally hilarious, and often sophomoric spoof of airline disaster films in which a passenger tries to land a disabled plane. Some of the jokes are tasteless, but there is a general air of good cheer as the script laughs most of all at the already laughable Airport movie series. [11 July 1980, p.3-8]

Metacritic review by Gene Siskel
Gene Siskel
Chicago Tribune

It is sophomoric, obvious, predictable, corny, and quite often very funny. And the reason it's funny is frequently because it's sophomoric, predictable, corny, etc. Example: Airplane Captain (Peter Graves): Surely you can't be serious. Doctor (Leslie Nielsen): I am serious. And don’t call me Shirley. This sort of humor went out with Milton Berle, Jerry Lewis, and knock-knock jokes. That's why it's so funny.

Metacritic review by Roger Ebert
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

At a time when throwaway gags seem like a luxury in any film, Airplane! has jokes—hilarious jokes—to spare. It's also clever and confident and furiously energetic, and it has the two most sadly neglected selling points any movie could want right now: it's brief (only eighty-eight minutes), and it looks inexpensive (it cost about three million dollars) without looking cheap. Airplane! is more than a pleasant surprise, in the midst of this dim movie season. As a remedy for the bloated self-importance of too many other current efforts, it's just what the doctor ordered.

Metacritic review by Janet Maslin
Janet Maslin
The New York Times