Airport (1970)

Airport (1970, USA) C-137m. SCOPE *** D: George Seaton, Henry Hathaway. Starring Burt Lancaster, Dean Martin, Jean Seberg, Jacqueline Bisset, George Kennedy, Helen Hayes, Van Heflin, Maureen Stapleton, Barry Nelson. Top-notch thriller set in stormy winter night at a metropolitan airport, where several characters and their problems are introduced: Worried chief of air traffic control Lancaster, his number-one technician Kennedy, smooth pilot Martin and his pregnant lover, stewardess Bisset, old stowaway Hayes, and suicidal, nervous Heflin. Professionally done, with great dialogues and most of the film operating on an emotional level. First-rate entertainment, from the novel by Arthur Hailey, also became the blueprint for more than a dozen disaster films to follow in the 1970s and was itself followed by three sequels, starting with AIRPORT 1975. Dramatic score by Alfred Newman. Uncredited Hathaway directed some of the outdoor scenes.


© Ron Altman