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The Great Skycopter Rescue (1980)

 |  Action, Adventure  |  1980 (USA)
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Ratings: 4.6/10 from 29 users  
Reviews: 4 user | 2 critic

When oil is discovered in a small-town, some greedy prospectors hire a gang of wild bikers to scare the townsfolk away. However, when a group of young pilots stumble across the underhanded plot, they plan an effective retaliation.


(as Lawrence D. Foldes)


(screenplay) (as Lawrence D. Foldes) , (screenplay), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Sheriff Burgess
Mr. Jason
Terry Michos ...
Jimmy Jet
Professor Benson
Paul Tanashian ...
Will Powerski
Terri Taylor ...
Richard C. Adams ...
Mr. Franks
Karen (as Maria Rebman)
Kim Johnson ...
John Carter ...
Jeanne Baird ...
Sara Lieberman
Burger Joint Manager
Michael Donovan O'Donnell ...
Electric Weany (as Michael O'Donnel)
Michael O'Brian ...
Deputy Sheriff
Gay Goodenough ...
Disco Waitress


When oil is discovered in a small-town, some greedy prospectors hire a gang of wild bikers to scare the townsfolk away. However, when a group of young pilots stumble across the underhanded plot, they plan an effective retaliation.

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Release Date:

1980 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Am Himmel ist die Hölle los  »

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Spoofs Apocalypse Now (1979) See more »

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User Reviews

Every 1970s American Pop Culture Fad Deserves It's Own Movie
16 April 2008 | by (New York, USA) – See all my reviews

At some point somebody should do a tally of all the 1970s pop culture fads in the USA that got at least one film made with it as the premise. Much like SUPERVAN, ROLLER BOOGIE, C.B. HUSTLERS, CONVOY and FRASIER THE SENSUOUS LION, here is yet another gloriously stupid movie built around some cultural fixation we had on something that now makes us sort of cringe with embarrassment. Instead of CB radios, roller derby or conversion vans, this time we get ultralight aircraft.

Specifically, ultra light aircraft nerds taking on a bunch of sadistic, creepy Heck's Angels bikers who look like out of work porn actors getting in a quick paycheck. They invade a small town at the behest of a mobster type boss who wants to scare everybody off and dig for oil. Their tactics include dumping milkshakes on people and stealing kids' ice cream cones, then blowing up cars and molesting drive-in burger stand waitresses. To these guys, nothing is sacred.

Good thing radio DJ Jimmy the Jet (or whatever he is called and who drives to and from work wearing a space suit left over from "The Six Million Dollar Man") and his nerd buddies are flying around in their ultralights. In what amusingly plays out as a parody of APOCALYPSE NOW they fly en-masse to the town and dive bomb the biker thugs with M80s. What is even more bizarre is that the film was made a year before APOCALYPSE NOW was released. Perhaps "Flight of the Valkerie" is just a popular song for helicopter assault sequences. Somebody ripped off somebody here.

Some camp value is to be found in the presence of BLACULA's William Marshall as the bigwig goon, Aldo Ray as the corrupt sheriff under his thumb, and "Gilligan's Island's" Russel Johnson as The Professor who concocts the areal bombardment's pyrotechnics. Beyond that the film really doesn't have much to offer those who were not into the whole ultralight aircraft craze, with the specter of John Denver hanging over the whole thing. Didn't people realize those things were dangerous? As another commentator points out, the film instantly reminds one of garbage like "The Dukes of Hazzard" with a heavy emphasis on staged car chases, things being blowed up real good, and guys who hang out shirtless together drinking beer. Later they pick up a couple of chicks and take them to a disco, proof positive that back then we had no idea that Freddy Mercury from Queen really was gay. Or at least a raging bisexual: One guy grins happily as his buddy scores with a fat bottomed girl by the campfire during a make-out scene, and you can't help but wonder where things may have gone in a more adventuresome film.

I'd say it's all in harmless fun but it's not: The film has some pretty mean spirited moments, especially when the heroic pilots start actually blowing up the bikers and killing them. Then it's back to the disco for some more boogie down dancing to the grooving stylistics of disco band Father, lead by none other that Steve Myland, to whom I can only assure readers that I am not related to in the least bit.

I guess the bottom line on the film is that if you are into the ultra light aircraft craze this is a must-see movie. Drugs will probably help anybody else.


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