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Pushing Tin (1999)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama, Romance  |  23 April 1999 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.0/10 from 24,105 users   Metascore: 47/100
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A feud develops between two air traffic controllers: one cocky and determined while the other is restrained and laidback, which inevitably affects their lives.



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Barry Plotkin
Ed Clabes
Tina Leary
Ron Hewitt
Pat Feeney
Philip Akin ...


Nick and the other boys (and Vicki Lewis) working the hotspot of air traffic control in New York are impressed with themselves, to say the least. They thrive on the no-room-for-error, fast-paced job and let it infect their lives. The undisputed king of pushing tin, "The Zone" Falzone, rules his workplace and his wedded life with the same short-attention span that gets planes where they need to be in the nick of time. That is, until Russell Bell, a new transfer with a reputation for recklessness but a record of pure perfection shatters the tensely-held status quo. The game of one-upmanship between the two flies so high as to lead Nick into Russell's bed with his wife. His sanity slipping just as fast as his hold on #1, Cusack's controller is thrown out-of-control when Thornton's wanderer quietly leaves town. Nick must now find a way to regain his sanity and repair his marriage before he breaks down completely. Written by Lordship <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A Comedy about Life, Love, Airplanes and Other Bumpy Rides. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and a scene of sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:





Release Date:

23 April 1999 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Mi espacio  »

Box Office


$38,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$3,555,032 (USA) (23 April 1999)


£211,735 (UK) (5 November 1999)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Billy Bob Thornton's character (Russell Bell) states in the movie that he is half Irish (his father) and half Choctaw Indian (his mother). In real life, Mr. Thornton's father is of Irish ancestry, while his mother is half Choctaw Indian and half Italian. See more »


During the bomb scare, the police in the movie are supposed to be Nassau County Police. However, the lights on the police cars are blue and red. No Nassau County police car at the time of the movie (1999) had blue lights on it. See more »


[Jet flies low over Ed's house]
Ed Clabes: Dammit! I left a *note*, to use alternate climbouts today. Who's on departure?
Tina Leary: Uh, I dunno it's probably Harrison?
Ed Clabes: Harrison, that asshole! I'll make sure every seven forty-seven leaving New York tomorrow night blows shingles off his roof!
Tina Leary: Well, at least it drowns out Falzone.
See more »


Featured in Best! Movies! Ever!: Airports (2007) See more »


Memories Are Made of This
Written by Rich Dehr, Terry Gilkyson, Frank Miller
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User Reviews

Waste of talented actors and interesting subject matter.
26 April 1999 | by See all my reviews

Pushing Tin takes a unique subject matter, a job that affects almost everyone in America, and compelling lead character in the midst of a moving internal struggle and absolutely ruins it. Why did the director and/or producer have to try and make Top Gun for Air Traffic Controllers? The first scene of this movie was so laughable I almost walked out. These filmmakers adapted this movie from an article, as the opening credits state. Too bad they used the Hollywood cookie cutter to do it. Mr. Cusack and Mr. Thornton are enjoyable as usual and so was Ms Blanchett, unfortunately that is not enough.

11 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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