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Just missed the '80s: The zaniest disaster movie ever - The Concorde … Airport '79



The Concorde … Airport '79 has been playing nonstop on cable lately, and that's a good thing because we can always use a good laugh. And no "disaster movie" hands out guffaws more often than The Concorde … Airport '79.

The final of four "Airport" movies, The Concorde … Airport '79 stars Alain Delon and George Kennedy as pilots of a Concorde commercial jet that just can't catch a break. If it's not a drone trying to down it, it's a rogue French military pilot or an exploding luggage compartment door.

The movie features an ensemble cast with more guest stars than a whole season of The Love Boat: Robert Wagner, Charo, John Davidson, Jimmie Walker are among the names '80s fans would likely recognize.

There are more implausibilities in the story than one human brain can comprehend. My favorite? When George Kennedy opens the window of the cockpit to hold a flare gun outside in an attempt to foil a pair of missiles fired at the plane.

Critics rightfully savaged the movie, which also failed to earn back its $14 million budget. The Concorde … Airport '79 earns its 17 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Here are five things you probably didn't know about The Concorde … Airport '79:

1. The Concorde in the movie was the seventh one built and in 1989 carried Pope John Paul II among its passengers. It would crash in 2000 shortly after takeoff from Paris, killing all 109 passengers and crew members onboard.

2. George Kennedy's character of Joe Patroni appeared in all four Airport pictures.

3. One side plot in the movie is the positive press coverage leading up to the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow. America later decided to boycott those games in protest of the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan.

4. This movie is often confused with another movie about the same plane in the same year: Concorde Affaire '79.

5. In the 1970 movie Airport, Kennedy's character of Joe Patroni has 5 kids. In The Concorde … Airport '79, he has just one son. Oh well, that's the least funny thing about the movie.

[Last modified: Friday, September 25, 2015 12:30pm]


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