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The Terminal (2004)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  18 June 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 277,989 users   Metascore: 55/100
Reviews: 595 user | 144 critic | 41 from

An eastern immigrant finds himself stranded in JFK airport, and must take up temporary residence there.



(story), (story), 2 more credits »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Dolores Torres (as Zoë Saldana)
Bobby Alima (as Guillermo Diaz)
First Class Steward
Valeriy Nikolaev ...
Milodragovich (as Valera Nikolaev)


Victor Novarski reaches JFK airport from a politically unstable country. Due to collapse of his government ,his papers are no longer valid in the airport, and hence he is forced to stay in the airport till the war cools down. He makes the airport his home and develops a friendship with the people who work there until he finally has to leave. Written by Keith Francis

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Life is waiting.


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief language and drug references | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




| | | |

Release Date:

18 June 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Terminal  »

Box Office


$60,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$19,053,199 (USA) (18 June 2004)


$14,076,317 (Japan) (4 February 2005)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Each failed application for entry to the USA counts against your chances of eventually being allowed in, so Viktor was actually hurting his cause by applying every day. See more »


Napoléon Bonaparte gave Josephine a gold medallion inscribed with the words "To Destiny" as a wedding present. See more »


[first lines]
PA announcer: United Airlines announcing the arrival of Flight 9435 from Beijing. Customer service representative, please report to gate C42.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The opening credits are spelled out on the tumblers of the flight schedule boards. See more »


Featured in In Flight Service: The Music of 'The Terminal' (2004) See more »


I Love New York
Written by Steve Karmen
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Sometimes You Find Good Things in the Most Unlikely Places.
23 July 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

An Eastern European (Tom Hanks) from a fictional country literally gets stuck at JFK Airport in New York after his landing coincides with the point at which a war causes his nation to no longer exist. Thus his paperwork and passport are no good. Hanks is in the U.S. for a mysterious reason and that reason becomes the hook in this wonderful picture. While stuck, Hanks sees more of America than he could have ever imagined. However he constantly has trouble with airport supervisor Stanley Tucci (in a perfect role). Runway worker Diego Luna makes a deal with Hanks so he can learn about passport officer Zoe Saldana (a woman who Luna has loved from afar) via Hanks' attempts to have his passport accepted. Also Hanks meets an elderly Indian janitor (Kumar Pallana) who has been in the states for decades, but the reason he is there also becomes a key point. While all this goes on, Hanks falls in love with 30-something flight attendant Catherine Zeta-Jones (perfectly illuminating and beautiful as usual). Zeta-Jones is sad and disillusioned with men (Michael Nouri of "Flashdance" in particular) and past relationships that have failed for one reason or another. Director Steven Spielberg has never really been known for romantic pictures ("Always" in 1989 is an exception), but he proves that he can definitely handle a production like this. The cast is excellent with Hanks making all those around him better. This story was co-written by Andrew Niccol (even though he strangely did not pen the final script), an under-rated screenwriter who struck gold in 1998 with "The Truman Show". Many of the good things from that script are also presented here in diverse and creative ways. By the way, the art direction/set decoration is amazing as everything within the titled location was built from scratch in a studio. Spielberg was not allowed to film any airports due to obvious security reasons. From top to bottom, "The Terminal" flies high. 4.5 out of 5 stars.

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