A cargo plane goes down in a sandstorm in the Sahara with less than a dozen men on board. One of the passengers is an airplane designer who comes up with the idea of ripping off the undamaged wing and using it as the basis for an airplane they will build to escape before their food and water run out.Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The Tallmantz Phoenix P-1 was designed by Otto Timm and built by Tallmantz Aviation, Inc. for the film. It had the following characteristics: Length: 45' Wingspan: 42' Engine: a like-new Pratt & Whitney R-1340 nine cylinder radial engine of 650 horsepower, taken from a T-6, as were the wheels and various other parts. Wings: wing panels taken from a T-11 (civilian conversion of an AT-11, which is a Beechcraft 18 type ) The apparent wing, tail, and undercarriage wire bracing was made out of clothesline, and was intentionally made to look flimsy. The fuselage and empennage were all hand-built from scratch, plywood over a wood frame. The cockpit was shallow and makeshift. The pilot sat down. Another person stood behind the pilot, and was strapped to a stringer. See more »
Incorrectly regarded as a goof: "When Captain Harris is preparing to walk across the desert, he declares that he had better get going because it is almost dark. However, the length of his shadow indicates it is much closer to noon than it is to dusk."
From the tone of Captain Harris' voice, and congruent with pilot Frank Towns' prior attempts to dissuade him by challenging his abilities...one being an inability to precisely navigate by the stars...Captain Harris is obviously being sarcastic in stating it's almost dark despite the midday hour. See more »
Don't forget to put it down in your diary, how very, very nice it was at the party here until the booze ran out!
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Closing credits epilogue: IT SHOULD BE REMEMBERED...
THAT PAUL MANTZ, A FINE MAN AND A BRILLIANT FLYER GAVE HIS LIFE IN THE MAKING OF THIS FILM... See more »
I use snippets from this film in a project management class. It is hard to imagine how the casting could have been any better. Jimmy Stewart plays the part of the aging pilot with an adventurous past so well not only because he was a terrific actor, but because he really was an aging pilot with a an adventurous past. Richart Attenborrow (spelling?) is wonderful as the diplomatic copilot that stands between Stewart and the engineer played by Kruger.
The dialogue was some of the best I've ever heard. "Mr. Townes you behave as though stupidity were a virtue..." You have to love it.
I'm almost sorry to see this movie being remade since it was done so well, but I'll still line up for the new one just to see if the magic can be made to work twice.
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