Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Flying the Friendly Skies

I used to love air travel:  the excitement of international flights coming and going, the glamour of crisply uniformed stewardesses and pilots, and, yes, even the airline food.  When I was a girl, I wanted to be a stewardess when I grew up.  Though I never realized that particular dream, my daughter was a flight attendant for awhile, and I have a friend who still flies the friendly skies.

I no longer have any desire to travel by plane:  the glamour and the airline meals, along with good wages and retirement benefits for airline personnel, are gone.  And unless being groped by security or subjected to a body scan is your bag--and it's not mine--the fun is gone, as well, replaced by bureaucratic hassle.  I still like to watch movies that render the bygone romance--and the occasional terror--of flying.  Here's a dozen of the best films about airports and airplanes.
  1. Those Magnificent Men in Their Flying Machines(1965).  One of those fun race movies so popular in the sixties.
  2. Airport(1970). It is the first disaster movie of the seventies and features an all-star cast.
  3. The Great Waldo Pepper(1975).  After the end of World War I, Waldo Pepper (Robert Redford) takes up barnstorming.
  4. Airplane!(1980).  A spoof on Airport.
  5. The Right Stuff(1983)  Sam Shepard is chuck Yeager, the first pilot to break the sound barrier.
  6. Air Force One(1997).  Harrison Ford plays the President forced to deal with terrorists.
  7. Six Days, Seven Nights(1998).  Another Harrison Ford vehicle, in which he plays a pilot stranded on a deserted island with a journalist (Anne Heche).
  8. Bounce(2000).  Buddy (Ben Affleck) gives his ticket to Greg, who has been bumped from the flight, but the plane crashes, killing all on board.  Buddy seeks out Greg's widow (Gwyneth Paltrow) with whom he falls in love, only she doesn't know of his connection to Greg.
  9. Catch Me If You Can(2002).  Leonardo DiCaprio plays a con man who passes himself off as a doctor, a lawyer, and pilot.
  10. View from the Top(2003).  Like many a girl, Donna (Gwyneth Paltrow) dreams of being a flight attendant.
  11. The Terminal(2004).  Tom Hanks, a man without a country, is stuck living in JFK Airport.
  12. Snakes on a Plane(2006).  I don't care what anyone says, I like this Samuel L. Jackson vehicle.

No comments:

Post a Comment