A supersonic airborne disaster. In order to survive a flight headed for the Moscow Olympics, passengers of the Concorde must endure aerial acrobatics to dodge missiles and survive a device that decompresses the plane.
This last film in the 'Airport 'series ends fast - with an SST (supersonic transport); Concorde. Joe Patroni (George Kennedy) Murray deal with nuclear missiles being fired at the'speed-bird' (the actual British Concorde's ATC name) as a passenger on-board is carrying documents which can bring down the titan of a large military contractor, and in order to prevent this, the CEO tries to arrange for the plane's mid-air destructoon, using the French air force as a patsy.who are under the impression they're bringing down a compromised plane.Written by
The maximum speed of a McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom was 1,473 mph. The maximum speed of the Aérospatiale/BAC Concorde was 1,354 mph. Phantoms typically carried AIM-9 Sparrow and AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles, both of which have a speed of mach 2.5 / 1,918 miles per hour. The combination of the Phantom's top speed and the speed of the missiles was 3,391 miles per hour. Considering the low maneuverability of the Concorde, if one of these missiles had attained a lock, the airliner would have no chance of survival. See more »
When Concorde starts breaking up and losing fuel the pilot's advised to make for Innesbruck, the nearest airport. George Kennedy says that's about 15 minutes and there's not enough fuel. Alain Delon says they can land on the snow field at the ski resort and advise control who contact the ski patrol advising them that they have no more than 8 or 9 minutes to prepare things but the speed Concorde flies they wouldn't have even that. See more »
SPOILER: There are two versions of the scene where Kevin Harrison committs suicide. The first, which is the theatrical version, has Harrison, on his private plane, after seeing that Maggie is still alive after the Concorde crashes in the mountains, shooting himself. The alternate scene, which airs on the network television version, which airs a further nineteen minutes of footage discarded from the theatrical version, has him shooting himself in a crowd of reporters while being asked about the Concorde incident. See more »
The Miniature Effects, The Lalo Schifrin Score, Robert Wagner...Not Bad
I remember walking out of an Australian movie theatre in 1980 and saying to my brother..."That was a disaster movie but what was the disaster?". Granted, I was a child at the time.
This Airport movie is different to the other three, no big sea dive or big collision, Airport '79 just seemed to be all over the place! However, the film has improved with age and two recent viewings have been very much enjoyed. It has a touch of The Towering Inferno (1974) with Robert Wagner still being up to no good, the miniature effects work of the Concorde itself is pleasing to my eyes and the film starts with a very uplifting Lalo Schifrin theme tune.
Perhaps Schifrin was trying to be the new disaster movie composer as in 1980 he would score Irwin Allen's When Time Ran Out as well.
There was to be a 5th Airport movie but the poor box office takings for Airport '79 put an end to all that. Too bad as all four Airport films are a special part of the 1970s and still survive repeat viewings to this day.
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