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Starflight: The Plane That Couldn't Land (1983)

Not Rated | | Sci-Fi, Thriller | TV Movie 27 February 1983
The fictional story of the first "hypersonic" commercial passenger plane, which can make the flight from New York to London in a mere four hours. On the maiden flight of this plane, a minor... See full summary »

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(screenplay) (as Robert Malcolm Young), (story)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Josh Gilliam
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Erica Hansen
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Q. T. Thornwell
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Nancy Gilliam
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Bowdish (as George Di Cenzo)
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Janet Briggs
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Freddie Barrett
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Laurie Hansen (as Heather Mc Adam)
Michael Sacks ...
Pete
Gary Bayer ...
Martin
Pat Corley ...
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Felix
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Mrs. Harvey
Diane Stilwell ...
Betty
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Storyline

The fictional story of the first "hypersonic" commercial passenger plane, which can make the flight from New York to London in a mere four hours. On the maiden flight of this plane, a minor disaster occurs resulting in the plane actually leaving the Earth's atmosphere and orbiting around the globe. A lack of heat-resistant tiling prevents the plane from simply re-entering the atmosphere. With oxygen (and therefore time) running out, the crew of the plane and the crew on the ground must figure out a way to return the plane and its passengers to safety. Written by Afterburner <aburner@erols.com>

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Taglines:

The first hypersonic passenger plane marooned in outer space helpless ... ready for certain death. See more »

Genres:

Sci-Fi | Thriller

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Release Date:

27 February 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Starflight One  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The movie is loosely based on the novel "Orbit" by Thomas H. Block, from 1982. In the novel, a hypersonic plane on a cruise from New York City to Sydney exceeds its cruise altitude, due to sabotage by a revenge-seeking company engineer. See more »

Goofs

In many scenes, including the escape through the tunnel, there is visible evidence of gravity being present, while the spacecraft is in a zero gravity environment. See more »

Quotes

Joe Pedowski: You're gonna try to fly this thing back?
Captain Cody Briggs: Joe, did you ever skip a flat rock across a lake and watch it skim and bounce along the surface? I wanna give reentry that kind of shot.
Joe Pedowski: I have skipped a few rocks on a few lakes in my time and I never saw yet one that didn't sink. It's one chance in a million.
Captain Cody Briggs: So was this accident.
Joe Pedowski: I am scared out of my mind being up here inside this plane and you want me to go outside?
[laughs nervously]
Joe Pedowski: oh no!
[pause]
Joe Pedowski: I'll need a wire stripper and some wire nuts... and ...
[...]
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User Reviews

Last Hurrah For The 70s Disaster Genre
30 March 2001 | by (Morristown, NJ) – See all my reviews

This might have been made in 1983 but it carries the smell of a leftover of the 70s disaster film genre and their many TV knockoffs (director Jerry Jameson being responsible among other things for "Airport 77") with the long litany of big names in the cast and cliche filled subplots. Indeed, "Starflight" is really just a reworking of the 1977 TV-movie "SST: Disaster In The Sky" when you get down to it only this time we have the silly wrinkle of a hypersonic plane getting forced into orbit somehow by accident. There then follows the hilarious implausibility of a single space shuttle that is somehow able to be launched at a moment's notice, then land and relaunch within a couple hours (it actually takes days to get a shuttle hooked up to a new external tank and rocket boosters and then get rolled out to the launch pad). And then get a load of this: Pilot Lee Majors is insistent that the entire crew stay aboard to the end, stewardesses included, but oops, when it comes to the stewardess that he's shacking up with (Lauren Hutton) he makes darn certain that she alone among the crew gets a privileged pass off the ship before the moment of danger comes in re-entry! Guess the moral of the story is if you want to avoid the danger of possible death, make certain you're sleeping around with the people in authority.

And by the way "Goulash" from Bombay, if you're a real person who really loved this movie that much, I have a bridge in Brooklyn I'd like to sell you.....


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