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Flight 90: Disaster on the Potomac (1984)

Flight 90: Disaster on the Potomac is a true story based on the crash of Air Florida flight 90 on January 13, 1982 in Washington D.C. This movie follows the main players throughout the day,... See full summary »

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Nominated for 2 Primetime Emmys. Another 1 win. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Patricia 'Nikki' Felch
...
Burt Hamilton
...
Joe Stiley
...
Priscilla Tirado
...
Roger Olian
...
Arland Williams
...
Marilyn Nichols
Richard Beauchamp ...
Jose Tirado
...
...
Donna Olian
...
Carole Biggs
...
David Frank
James Whitmore Jr. ...
Captain Larry Wheaton
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
...
Dishevelled Man
Richard Backus ...
Larry Nichols
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Storyline

Flight 90: Disaster on the Potomac is a true story based on the crash of Air Florida flight 90 on January 13, 1982 in Washington D.C. This movie follows the main players throughout the day, with a lot of care taken to re-create what actually went wrong, who died, and who survived. There is a lot of actual footage from the day, as well as accurate representations of aircraft type and airline. Written by Trent Nickson <callisto@zip.com.au>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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THE TRUE STORY. [Video] See more »

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Drama

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Details

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Release Date:

1 April 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Flight No. 90  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Incorporated original television footage of the survivors as they clung to wreckage and chunks of ice in the freezing water of the Potomac. See more »

Goofs

The tractor shown "pushing" the aircraft off the gate is a baggage tug, that would not have the weight or the power to move even an empty 737. See more »

Quotes

[referring to Nikki's blue swimsuit]
David Frank: The rising executive's all-purpose wardrobe. Ideal for staff meetings, impressing the clients...
See more »

Connections

Edited from Lost Flight (1970) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Flight 90 Horror
3 May 2014 | by (San Gabriel, Ca., USA) – See all my reviews

The made-for-TV movie FLIGHT 90: DISASTER ON THE POTOMAC, which aired on April 1, 1984, recreates one of the most horrific air crashes in American history.

On January 13, 1982, Air Florida Flight 90 had taken off from Washington National Airport in Arlington County, Virginia, just two miles from the White House, bound for Fort Lauderdale, Florida in poor weather conditions. After just thirty seconds in the air, and achieving a maximum altitude of only 350 feet, it then crashed onto the 14th Street Bridge and then into the ultra-frigid Potomac River. Of the five crew members onboard, only one of them survived (with serious injuries); of the seventy-four passengers, all but four of them died; and on the bridge, four motorists sustained fatal injuries. The plane had not been properly de-iced before taking off from National; and rescue efforts were deemed to be extremely flawed.

What might otherwise have been a garden-variety air disaster TV film got a very good treatment by use of a lot of authentic video footage from that actual day, and a desire by both director Robert Michael Lewis and screenwriter John McGreevey not to overdramatize things. There are some fairly familiar faces in the cast (Stephen Macht; Richard Masur; Barry Corbin, etc.), but this isn't a spot-the-star affair meant to exploit a horrible tragedy. It isn't always perfect, but it thankfully sticks to the facts without being gratuitous in the way things are presented.


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