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Richard Attenborough plays Ernest Tilley, a man who lost his daughter in a hit-and-run accident. He tracks down the man responsible for the accident and boards the same plane, threatening ... See full summary »


Cy Endfield (as C. Raker Endfield)


Cy Endfield (screenplay) (as C. Raker Endfield), Sigmund Miller (screenplay) | 1 more credit »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Attenborough ... Ernest Tilley
Stanley Baker ... Captain Bardow
Hermione Baddeley ... Mrs. Satterly
Bernard Braden Bernard Braden ... Otis Randolf
Diane Cilento ... Angelica Como
Barbara Kelly ... Edwina Randolf
David Kossoff ... Dr. Bergstein
Virginia Maskell ... Pam Leyton
Harry Secombe ... Binky Meadows
Elizabeth Sellars ... Inez Barrington
Sybil Thorndike ... Emma Morgan (as Dame Sybil Thorndike)
Mai Zetterling ... Carol Tilley
Marty Wilde Marty Wilde ... Billy Forrester
Patrick Allen ... Mulliner
Paul Carpenter Paul Carpenter ... George Towers


Richard Attenborough plays Ernest Tilley, a man who lost his daughter in a hit-and-run accident. He tracks down the man responsible for the accident and boards the same plane, threatening to blow up himself and everyone on board as an act of vengeance. What follows is an Airport-type movie with all the passengers having their own little subplots and fears. Written by Dimitri

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Why Do You Want To Kill Me? The crisis of fear is faced by THIS BOY and his fellow passengers...Panicked by a demented man's desire for revenge!




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Release Date:

20 November 1959 (Ireland) See more »

Also Known As:

Der Tod hat Verspätung See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Westrex Recording System)
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


First credited film role of Paul Eddington. See more »


On the aircraft the passengers go down a staircase to the 'lounge', where there is a row of windows the same as on the upper level. However, on the exterior shots of the plane there is quite obviously only one row of windows - so there is no lower level accessible to the passengers. See more »


Capt. Bardow: Mr Tilley you're a decent man, you must fight this madness with everything you've got.
See more »


Theme Music
Composed and Sung by Marty Wilde
Song Lyrics written by Cy Endfield
See more »

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User Reviews

Way Ahead of Its Time
27 October 2012 | by fung0See all my reviews

It's not easy to catch up with this marvelous little film, but DO NOT pass up any chance you get. It's a real little gem, which manages to live up to some very high aspirations.

A quick plot synopsis makes it sound very much like Airport, or The High and the Mighty, but Jet Storm is a very different type of film. It's not an adventure, or a soaper, or a suspenser. Although it does include a diverse group of passengers and a hidden bomb, it's not actually about whether the plane will be saved, or how. It's about how these people react to danger. And about how all of us SHOULD react to danger.

The cast of familiar British actors does a superb job. Richard Attenborough shines in his portrayal of a weak, confused man, who's slipped over the brink of bitterness, depression and madness. Harry Secombe adds a contrastingly jovial note. And a young Paul Eddington (best known from the much later Yes, Minister series) is interesting as a not-very-admirable husband.

We learn a lot about these various characters, but the real meat of the film is in how each of them reacts when faced with imminent danger and probable death. The film asks us not to worry so much about whether these people will die, but to consider how they choose to live. Do they meet fear and uncertainty with fortitude? Resourcefulness? Humor? Resignation? Or even indifference?

The film shows us that some of these responses are clearly better than others. It demonstrates that the fear of disaster is far worse than the disaster itself. This message makes Jet Storm more relevant today than when it was made. We can see how much wiser things were in the 1950s. A psychopath would have been able to walk up and easily place a bomb on an airliner... but we didn't allow that remote possibility to dominate our lives.

Jet Storm reminds us that risk is a part of life, but when we focus on that risk to the exclusion of everything else, we stop living. So while terrorism (of any sort) is sad, and crazy and reprehensible, giving in to terror is far more shameful.

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