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Flight of the Phoenix (2004)

PG-13  |   |  Action, Adventure, Drama  |  17 December 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.1/10 from 44,505 users   Metascore: 47/100
Reviews: 219 user | 114 critic | 28 from

Survivors of a plane crash in the Mongolian desert work together to build a new plane.



, (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jeremy (as Kirk Jones)
Paul Ditchfield ...
Martin Hindy ...
Newman (as Martin 'Mako' Hindy)
Lead Smuggler (as Anthony Wong)


A group of air crash survivors are stranded in the Mongolian desert with no chance of rescue. Facing a brutal environment, dwindling resources, and an attack by desert smugglers, they realize their only hope is doing the impossible... building a new plane from the wreckage of the old one. Written by

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Out of the ashes, hope will rise. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some language, action and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

17 December 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

El vuelo del Fénix  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,019,430 (USA) (17 December 2004)


$830,815 (Australia) (5 August 2005)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Like James Stewart, who played Frank Towns in the 1965 version of "Flight of the Phoenix", Dennis Quaid is an experienced pilot. See more »


After the storm caused the aircraft to go inverted. Frank brought it to upright. As he did this a quick view of the artificial horizon showed it nearly wings level. The instrument in a C-119 would not do this. On older aircraft the gyro in the artificial horizon "tumbles" with the degree of roll exceeding 70 degrees of roll and the line in the horizon would end up in either the upper right or left corners of the instrument face. It would not in any case show a near wings-level attitude. See more »


A.J.: Listen up. We got a major problem. Looks like we have to make an emergency landing. Make sure you're strapped in, and if you believe in God, it's time to call in a favor.
See more »


Referenced in The Benchwarmers (2006) See more »


Gimme Some Lovin'
Written by Steve Winwood, Muff Winwood and Spencer Davis
Performed by Steve Winwood
Re-mix by Ryan Freeland
Courtesy of Wincraft Music, Inc.
See more »

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User Reviews

ho-hum remake
6 January 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Flight of the Phoenix" is at best a so-so remake of the fine Robert Aldrich adventure classic from1965. The plot in both films is fairly simple and straightforward. After a plane crash lands in the Gobi Desert, the survivors hit upon the notion of rebuilding the damaged vehicle in the hopes of flying it back to civilization. Dennis Quaid assumes the role, originally filled by Jimmy Stewart, of the pilot who, against all odds, endeavors to lead his passengers to safety.

Although the new version follows the original fairly closely in terms of both character delineation and plot development, the story doesn't seem quite as fresh today as it did when we first encountered it close to 40 years ago. Perhaps what's missing is the guiding hand of a master craftsman like Aldrich to really deliver the goods (John Moore, a far less distinguished director, is manning the controls here). This "Flight" feels awfully predictable and rote, as we plow our way through each of the various survival threats, rescue attempts and internecine personal conflicts that are standard in all such tales of survivors stranded in a hostile environment. Each of the characters steps out of the shadows to have his or her own Moment in the Sun (yes, in this version, there is actually a woman aboard), before receding dutifully into the background to allow the next person to do the same. About the only intriguing element in the story is the fact that the main character, the pilot of the plane, has to actually be talked into participating in the Quixotic rescue plan. Thus, he is a leader and a hero more by default than by design.

Although the crash itself is fairly impressive from a technical standpoint - despite a rather phony-looking, computer-generated sandstorm that brings the plane down - once we end up on the desert floor, the movie doesn't do a particularly effective job conveying the truly grueling nature of the predicament these individuals are facing. We never really get the sense that they are just a few water droplets away from dying of thirst or heatstroke. Moreover, the feat that they are able to accomplish seems barely credible - from a sheer mechanical engineering standpoint - given the lack of resources and expertise with which the group has to cope. The main weakness with a film like "Flight of the Phoenix" is that, when the plane goes down, we're stuck in the desert right along with the characters, and if they don't have anything particularly interesting to say to one another, we can feel just as stranded as they.

Thus, despite a few quality moments, this "Flight" never manages to get off the runway. Check out the original instead.

116 of 183 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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