Sheriff John Higgins quits and goes into prospecting after he thinks he has killed his best friend in shooting it out with robbers. He encounters his dead buddy's sister and helps her run ... See full summary »
Hazel Flagg of Warsaw, Vermont receives the news that her terminal case of radium poisoning from a workplace incident was a complete misdiagnosis with mixed emotions. She is happy not to be... See full summary »
William A. Wellman
Frisco Jenny was orphaned by the 1906 earthquake and fire and has become the madame of a prosperous bawdy house. She puts her son up for adoption and he rises to prominence as district ... See full summary »
William A. Wellman
Helen Jerome Eddy
A family saga: In a stunning mountain valley ranch setting near Aspen, complex and dangerous family dynamics play out against the backdrop of the first big snowstorm of winter and an ... See full summary »
The story of Soviet cypher-clerk Igor Gouzenko who was posted to the Soviet Embassy in Ottawa,Canada in 1943 and defected in 1945 to reveal the extent of Soviet espionage activities directed against Canada.
Jimmy writes the 'Up and Down Broadway' column for the New York Globe, and he is head over heels for Mary. But Mary is more interested in her career and is looking at starring on Broadway ... See full summary »
William A. Wellman
Douglas Fairbanks Jr.,
Commercial pilot Jim Blair is blackballed after his plane crashes in a thunderstorm. Depressed, he begins working as a bank teller until he meets beautiful Jill Collins, a barnstorming parachutist working with her daredevil pilot brother. Jim's immediately attracted, and when her brother's killed in a freak crash, he reveals his past to her and volunteers to replace her dead sibling in their air carnival act. As they tour throughout the Southwest, their affection turns physically intimate when they're on the road as they characteristically sleep in adjoining hotel rooms. Jill wants marriage but is resisted by Jim, who believes that his risky lifestyle precludes the luxury of a wife and family. When Jim's brother Bud joins them, he too is immediately attracted to Jill but respects his brother's relationship, However, after another freak accident puts Jim in the hospital for a prolonged convalescence, Jim returns to find them married and in bed together. Angry and bitter, he becomes a ... Written by
According to an interview with William Wellman, Jr. in the special features for the DVD of "The High and the Mighty," his father used John Wayne as a stuntman in this film. See more »
When Neil and Jill are inside the passenger plane talking to the friend who had seen Neil's brother Jim, the view out the window beside Jill shows the plane at first parked (as the pilot excuses himself and moves up the aisle between them to take the controls), then begins moving on the ground and picking up speed and taking off. But the entire time, the sound of an idling engine is heard very loudly in the background. The engine sound should have changed to a high-rev sound for takeoff. See more »
[Referring to song on the jukebox]
Remember that song? The birds do it... the bees do it...
James 'Jim' Blaine:
Yeah, and ducks do it, but who wants to be a duck?
See more »
Some great action and stunts are ruined by some boring melodrama that doesn't add up to much. James Blaine (Richard Barthelmess) moves back home after he crashes a passenger plane and is blamed for it. He gets a job working in a carnival air show where he falls in love with a woman (Sally Eilers) but can't see himself marrying anyone. Enter the man's brother (Tom Brown) who also falls in love with the woman, which causes James to lose it. CENTRAL AIRPORT has some truly great stuff but sadly they're wasted in some boring love triangle that really never makes any sense and at the end of the movie it's really not cleared up either. Director William Wellman gets the sole credit on the film but he was replaced by Alfred Green for a number of weeks when he came down with the flu. I really do wonder which scenes Green actually directed but I've seen enough Wellman movies to where I can comfortably say that Green was in charge of the love stuff. I say that because the majority of these scenes contain no life, no energy and no atmosphere, which certainly wasn't what you'd expect from Wellman. The scenes that you can tell the wild man director contain some rather risky pre-code material including a strong bit of sexuality early on when James meets the woman as well as towards the end when they're reunited. This is 1933 we're talking about and even though the woman is married to the younger brother we get scenes where she and James are kissing mouth to mouth. That there would certainly not have happened a year later when the code was forced. Most of the stuff dealing with the younger brother simply never adds up, isn't very believable and is just downright lifeless. The performances are a mixed bag with Eilers easily stealing the show as the woman caught in the middle. She's probably best remembered for appearing in a few of the Buster Keaton/MGM titles but she really delivers a strong performance here and her undressing, pre-code moments are certainly memorable as well. Barthelmess isn't too bad in the lead but he really doesn't bring much energy. I found Brown to be incredibly boring in his role as the brother and quite annoying as well. People will want to keep their eyes open for John Wayne who appears in the final wreck sequence but doesn't have any lines. CENTRAL AIRPORT contains some amazing stunts, wonderful aerial work and some nice pre-code moments but sadly all of this gets caught up in a silly love story that just never works.
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