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Hostage Flight (1985)

Trans Allied Flight 136 is hijacked in flight and diverted by its four captors to New York's JFK Airport. When the plane departs for London and the terrorists begin murdering hostages, the passengers begin to fight back.


Steven Hilliard Stern (as Steven Hillard Stern)


Felix Culver (teleplay), Stephen Zito (teleplay) | 2 more credits »




Cast overview, first billed only:
Ned Beatty ... Art Hofstadter
Barbara Bosson ... Roberta Spooner
René Enríquez ... Hector (as René Enriquez)
Jack Gilford ... Mr. Singer
John Karlen ... DiSalvo
Frank McRae ... Bart Cooper
Mitchell Ryan ... Captain Malone
Dee Wallace ... Laura Kenrick (as Dee Wallace Stone)
Kristina Wayborn ... Ilsa Beck
Ina Balin ... Rita
Kim Johnston Ulrich ... Jane (as Kim Ulrich)
Frank M. Benard ... Jean Batiste Ronet
Frank Annese Frank Annese ... Nasrallah
Michael Alldredge ... Bradigan
Allan Miller ... Lawyer


Four terrorists of different ethnicities and without an obvious common link take hold of an American jetliner and demand release of their leader from a British prison. They murder a stewardess to prove they mean business and threaten to pick off more if their demands are not met. But surprises await the hijackers: an armed policeman is aboard, and the passengers manage to begin a whispered plot to fight back. After a bloody shootout with further casualties on both sides, the mood of the film shifts sharply as the plot devolves to a single question: do the passengers wait till the plane lanes and turn the surviving terrorists over to the authorities, or do they "try" them themselves aboard the plane? Written by Morganalee

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Did You Know?


The original ending had the terrorists hanged. But an ending that had them shot when they broke free aired in the US. The other ending was shown internationally. See more »


When the hijackers take over we see three flight attendants brought to the coach section, along with the two attendants already stationed in there that makes five. There would be upwards of 10 on a DC10 passenger flight. See more »


Bradigan: [to a hostage] You, hands on your seat!
[the hostage does not react and Bradigan hits him]
Colette: You don't have to hit him.
[Bradigan hits the hostage even harder]
Bradigan: *You* did that to him.
See more »

Alternate Versions

Reportedly, there are two versions: in the first, the passengers capture and hang the terrorists. The scene showing the feet of the terrorists dangling in the aisles is very chilling. In an alternate version, the passengers simply capture the terrorists and keep them tied up until the terrorists can be bound over to authorities. This was the version that aired on NBC after the former ending was rejected by the network; the version later seen in syndication restored the original ending. See more »


Edited from Airplane! (1980) See more »

User Reviews

Fighting Back
14 September 2001 | by virek213See all my reviews

This 1985 made-for-TV suspense drama about Mideast terrorists who hijack a flight from New York to London, only to eventually find themselves at the mercy of the very people they've held hostage, seems now to be very much like the 1998 feature film THE SIEGE.

Truth tends to be stranger than fiction, but somehow, from what we know so far, there may have been HOSTAGE FLIGHT-type struggles for retaking control of the passenger jets that rammed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and Pennsylvania on September 11, 2001. I have the uneasy feeling that this film, though it might have gone unnoticed but for its theme of hostages fighting back, may be quite prescient now.

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Release Date:

17 November 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Horas de Angústia See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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