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Skyjacked (1972) More at IMDbPro »


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5.6/10   1,299 votes »
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Release Date:
26 August 1972 (Japan) See more »
The Sky's The Limit For Suspense See more »
A crazed Vietnam vet bomber hijacks a Boeing 707 in this disaster film filled with the usual early '70s stereotypes... See more » | Add synopsis »
(6 articles)
R.I.P. John Guillermin (1925 – 2015)
 (From Flickeringmyth. 1 October 2015, 5:01 AM, PDT)

John Guillermin 1925-2015
 (From EmpireOnline. 30 September 2015, 10:52 AM, PDT)

Trends in 70's Cinema: Disaster Movies
 (From Cinelinx. 13 September 2015, 7:39 PM, PDT)

User Reviews:
When flying the friendly skies was easier and safer (mostly) See more (35 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Charlton Heston ... Capt. Henry 'Hank' O'Hara

Yvette Mimieux ... Angela Thacher

James Brolin ... Jerome K. Weber

Claude Akins ... Sgt. Ben Puzo

Jeanne Crain ... Mrs. Clara Shaw

Susan Dey ... Elly Brewster

Roosevelt Grier ... Gary Brown

Mariette Hartley ... Harriet Stevens

Walter Pidgeon ... Sen. Arne Lindner

Ken Swofford ... John Bimonte

Leslie Uggams ... Lovejoy Wells

Ross Elliott ... Harold Shaw

Nicholas Hammond ... Peter Lindner
Mike Henry ... Sam Allen

Jayson Kane ... William Reading (as Jayson William Kane)
Toni Clayton ... Jane Burke

John Hillerman ... Walter Brandt

Kelley Miles ... Hazel Martin
Maureen Connell ... Mrs. O'Hara

John Fiedler ... Robert Grandig
Ed Connelly ... First-Class Passenger #1
Forrest Wood ... First-Class Passenger #2
Wesley Lau ... Stanley Morris
Jenifer Shaw ... Cosmetic Salesgirl
Jack Denbo ... Thompson
Roy Engel ... Pilot
Joe Canutt ... Hunter
Grahame Pratt ... Branson
Genadii Biegouloff ... Russian Leader
Craig Shreeve ... Airline Attendant
Lorna Thayer ... Weber's Mother

Dan White ... Weber's Father
William Martel ... General
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Kenner G. Kemp ... Priest Passenger (uncredited)
Natividad Vacío ... Spanish Passenger (uncredited)

Directed by
John Guillermin 
Writing credits
David Harper (novel "Hijacked")

Stanley R. Greenberg 

Produced by
James C. Pratt .... associate producer (as James Pratt)
Walter Seltzer .... producer
Original Music by
Perry Botkin Jr. 
Cinematography by
Harry Stradling Jr. 
Film Editing by
Robert Swink 
Art Direction by
Edward C. Carfagno 
Set Decoration by
Charles Pierce 
Costume Design by
Jack Bear 
Makeup Department
Siegfried H. Gelke .... makeup artist
Gloria Montemayor .... hair stylist
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
James W. Gavin .... second unit director
Dick Moder .... assistant director
Art Department
Carl Beondé .... property master (as Carl Beonde)
Frank Wesselhoff .... painter (uncredited)
Sound Department
Harry W. Tetrick .... sound
Charles M. Wilborn .... sound
Tommy Goodwin .... foley mixer (uncredited)
Special Effects by
Ralph Swartz .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Bill Hansard .... background projection
Joe Canutt .... stunts (uncredited)
Robert Sands .... stunt pilot (uncredited)
Camera and Electrical Department
Ralph Gerling .... camera operator (as Ralph R. Gerling)
Donald M. Morgan .... photographer: second unit (as Don Morgan)
Doug Byers .... electrician (uncredited)
Music Department
William Saracino .... music editor
Other crew
Ed Connelly .... technical advisor
Esther Stephenson .... script supervisor
Arthur Wilde .... unit publicist (uncredited)
Crew verified as complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Sky Terror" - USA (TV title)
"Hijack" - Japan (English title) (imdb display title)
See more »
101 min
Color (Metrocolor)
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:PG | Finland:K-16 | Netherlands:14 (original rating) | Norway:16 | Sweden:15 | UK:A (original rating) | USA:PG

Did You Know?

John Fiedler's voice is obviously dubbed in this film. (Perhaps it was decided in post-production that Fiedler's own characteristic squeaky, high-pitched voice was too off-putting in what was intended to be a suspenseful drama.)See more »
Revealing mistakes: Almost all of the vehicles at the site that is supposed to be Moscow Airport are American made.See more »
[first lines]
John Bimonte:[Hank is doing his walk-around the aircraft] Hey, Hank! Ready to go.
Capt. Henry 'Hank' O'Hara:Wrong! You got a broken cowling latch here.
John Bimonte:What the hell? I'll get right on it.
Capt. Henry 'Hank' O'Hara:Take all the time you want, John. You got 10 minutes.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Edited into "Dr. Shrinker" (1976)See more »


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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful.
When flying the friendly skies was easier and safer (mostly), 2 February 2015
Author: SimonJack from United States

If the Internet and IMDb had been around in 1972, I wonder what the rating for "Skyjacked" would have been then, and what it would be now. It surely would have been much higher than the 5.6 average it has from 1,100 viewers at the date of my review here. The first hijacking of an airplane in the U.S. occurred May 1, 1961, and that is when it first was called a "skyjacking." Before then, there had been a sporadic number of escape attempts that involved commandeering aircraft, mostly military. Those were in Eastern Europe and South America. But after this event in the U.S., skyjacking increased significantly.

By the time this film was made, skyjacking had become a household word. There had been several incidents in the U.S. Most of them had been one of two types – a ransom hold-up of an aircraft to obtain money, or a commandeering of an aircraft to fly somewhere for political asylum. Cuba was the choice for most "political" refugees. The movie is based on a novel by David Harper.

"Skyjacked" is the very first film about skyjacking and it began a new sub-genre. Air disaster films also were popular by then, and they continued through the 1970s with a few each decade thereafter. But, not many more skyjacking movies were made until the rash of films in the 1990s. Those were after widespread airport and aircraft security measures had been instituted, and these were more of the action- adventure thrillers that involved complicated takeovers by sizable groups. I think the first film of any consequence about a terrorist skyjacking was just two years after this one. Sean Connery starred in "The Terrorists," in 1974.

At the time "Skyjacked" came out the culture of travel was much different than it is today. There were no long lines for people to go through scanners, metal detectors, and personal and baggage checks. Another reviewer noted that flying in those days was much like catching trains had been for decades. One went to a window to buy or pick up a ticket, waited for a boarding call, and then filed through a door to board a plane. Family members and friends could sit in the waiting area until one took off. A fond memory I have about flying in those days was arriving home and having my wife and children meet me when I walked out of the gate door. I always asked a stewardess for extra peanut packets so I could give one to each of my children. It became a sort of family tradition for years and the kids always looked forward to it. Sadly, none of my adult children today, or anyone else, can have that same experience when they travel by air.

"Skyjacked" gives a realistic look at the time and how airline crews came to handle skyjackings. Charleton Heston does an excellent job in his role as Captain Hank O'Hara. The rest of his cockpit crew are excellent as well. Other roles are played well, but I agree with a couple of other reviewers about the romantic past of O'Hara and chief stewardess Angela Thatcher, played by Yvette Mimieux. It's more of a distraction, and thankfully it doesn't take up too much of the film's time. But I dock the film one star for its inclusion. It doesn't fit the script and isn't needed. Hollywood moguls thought there always had to be a romantic interest of the stars. Incidentally, female cabin assistants or flight attendants then were called stewardesses, and males were called stewards.

This is a very good film with a realistic look at the time and the behaviors of flight crews and first concern for their passengers. The only other faults I find with the film are two actions by O'Hara. This is likely the fault of the writers and/or director. Even with no security or scanning system in place, the captain made one mistake early. He didn't ask to see Sgt. Weber's (played by James Brolin) military orders. Since this was a request for the captain to waive normal procedures, he should have taken the extra precaution to be sure the sergeant had orders showing him on family or hardship leave, or on regular leave. Especially since O'Hara had been a colonel in the Air Force (it's in the movie), that should have been an automatic reaction. The second was toward the end. When the captain had the opportunity to leave the aircraft after everyone else was off, he should have done so. The extra heroics of hiding and trying to take Weber down himself were wrong and uncalled for. No one else was in danger. All the passengers and crew were safely off the plane. The responsibility of the captain at that point was to save himself.

Some reviewers referred to this film as clichéd. Without examples, one can't know what they refer to. But, since it is the first film on skyjacking, and a very early one in general about havoc in air travel, the phrases and terms used here were mostly new and original at that time. They've only become clichés by overuse since then. It helps to better appreciate these films by viewing them through the lens of history, especially when the matters of time, place and culture are relevant.

I highly recommend this film. It is an excellent look at air travel for its time. And, it's an excellent portrayal of the air travel industry and how its personnel handle crises.

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4:3 with widescreen credits? kurtangle83
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