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Con Air (1997)

2:27 | Trailer
Newly paroled ex-con and former U.S. Ranger Cameron Poe finds himself trapped in a prisoner transport plane when the passengers seize control.


Simon West


Scott Rosenberg
590 ( 269)
Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Colm Meaney ... Agent Duncan Malloy
Mykelti Williamson ... 'Baby-O' O'Dell
Nick Chinlund ... William 'Billy Bedlam' Bedford
Renoly Santiago ... Sally-Can't Dance (as Renoly)
John Malkovich ... Cyrus 'The Virus' Grissom
Ving Rhames ... Nathan 'Diamond Dog' Jones
Dave Chappelle ... 'Pinball' Parker
Rachel Ticotin ... Guard Sally Bishop
Steve Eastin ... Guard Falzon
Steve Buscemi ... Garland Greene - 'The Marietta Mangler'
Danny Trejo ... Johnny-23
M.C. Gainey ... Swamp Thing
Landry Allbright ... Casey Poe
John Cusack ... Agent Vince Larkin
Monica Potter ... Tricia Poe


Cameron Poe, a highly decorated Army Ranger, comes home to Alabama to his wife Tricia, only to run into a few drunken regulars at the bar where she works. Cameron accidentally kills one of the drunks, and is sent to a federal penitentiary for involuntary manslaughter for seven years. He becomes eligible for parole and can now go home to his wife and daughter. Unfortunately, Cameron has to share a prison airplane with some of the country's most dangerous criminals, who take control of the plane and are now planning to escape the country. Cameron has to find a way to stop them while playing along. Meanwhile, United States Marshal Vince Larkin is trying to help Cameron get free and stop the criminals, led by Cyrus "The Virus" Grissom. Written by John Wiggins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Get Ready To Fly See more »


Action | Crime | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Don Simpson reportedly hated the film's concept. When he and Jerry Bruckheimer ended their longtime producing partnership, Simpson was happy to relinquish any ties to the film, while Bruckheimer got the green light from BV to begin filming for a summer 1997 release. The film was not affected by Simpson's death in January 1996. See more »


(at around 1h 13 mins) Just before Poe meets Larkin, he is surrounded by people with guns. He holds his hands out and away from him as a gesture of surrendering. His arms are back down at his sides for the close-ups, but are out and away from him again during other shots. See more »


[first lines]
Officer at Leaving Ceremony: Army Rangers have a proud history. Since the 1700s, Rangers have led the way in every major confrontation in which the United States has been involved. You men are a credit to that fine heritage, and I'm sorry to see you go. But you've served your country well, and you've displayed the ability to fight on to the Ranger objective and complete its mission, never leaving behind a fallen comrade no matter what the odds or the enemy. I thank you. America thanks you. And I wish you luck ...
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Alternate Versions

Con Air was not cut by the BBFC, but the certificate was raised from a '15' at the cinema to an '18' on video, as it was felt that original decision was too lenient. However, there are reports of cuts to all home versions (including the US releases) so these must have been made by the US distributors. See more »


References A View to a Kill (1985) See more »


Sweet Home Alabama
Written by Ronnie Van Zant, Edward King (as Ed King) and Gary Rossington
Performed by Lynyrd Skynyrd
Courtesy of MCA Records
By arrangement with Universal Music Special Markets
See more »

User Reviews

Take the ride
8 March 2004 | by MichaelOatesSee all my reviews

Strap yourselves in, fasten your seatbelts and prepare for one of the most exhilarating thrill rides of your life as "Con Air" takes you on a two-hour adventure that includes an all-star cast, powerful action sequences and great direction. Everyone will be glad to learn that "Con Air" is an action film that is able to have a great story to accompany it.

Originality and believability are two more keys to the success of a film because if nobody believes the story, success can be thrown out the window. "Con Air" revolves around a plane carrying high-risk prisoners being transported to a maximum-security prison. However, the prisoners have other ideas.

Action films cannot survive without the right cast in place to portray the heroes and villains; therefore, the director must locate the right talent who has the correct chemistry to make it work. For "Con Air," the director chose five immensely and incredibly talented actors who fit this formula. Nicolas Cage, John Cusack, John Malkovich, Ving Rhames lead an all-star, stellar cast in "Con Air." Chemistry between cast members is key to the success of every movie. It didn't take long to realize these five actors contained a massive amount of chemistry.

Cage stars as Cameron Poe, a parolee on his way home to his wife and daughter until he runs into a problem and save the day. Cage is one of the most versatile actors I have come across. Playing everything from a romantic lead in "It Could Happen To You" and Moonstruck" to dramatic roles in "Leaving Las Vegas" and "Bringing Out The Dead" to comedic roles in "Trapped In Paradise" and "Guarding Tess." Cage is the ultimate action star combining all of these elements to bring home the role of Cameron Poe. For this reason, I'm proud to call him one of my favorite actors.

Monica Potter and young newcomer Landry Albright star as Cameron's wife and daughter to whom he is flying home to after being paroled. Potter's beauty radiates off the screen with such heat and force I almost melt.

She may not be a veteran, but Potter's poise, beauty, talent and presence has proven that she could be mistaken for one. I relish every opportunity I had to watch her on screen because I knew what I was seeing was something special. Potter is on the rise with awards in her future and great films on the horizon.

Albright's performance as Casey brought smiles to my face because she is one of the cutest and most talented newcomers to hit Hollywood in recent years. Albright may not have a lot of dialogue, but her presence on screen is a sight for sore eyes, her beauty is hypnotizing and her energy is electric.

Albright will have a long, bright future in acting if she decides to pursue the profession because she has the special sparkle in her eye and aura surrounding her. I can't wait to see her next film.

Malkovich is Cyrus 'The Virus' Grissom, the ringleader of the hijacking. Malkovich's face oozes with villainous intent, which is one of the reasons he is so great at playing one. With his role in "Con Air," he proves once again he is the best. Cyrus was calm, cool, and collected in the face of danger as he led his group of convicts.I have gained a new respect for Malkovich because I was able to see the true range and versatility he brought to the role.

However, the best was yet to come as I learned that the supporting cast was a welcome surprise. For example, Rhames is Nathan 'Diamond Dog' Jones, Cyrus' right hand man. Mykelti Williamson stars as Baby-O O'Dell, Poe's only friend on board "The Jailbird." John Cusack is Vince Larkin, a federal agent, who from the ground is doing his best to bring down the plane full of convicts. At odds with Larkin is Duncan Malloy, played by Colm Meaney.

Another aspect of "Con Air" I enjoyed was the writing because the film was able to tell a story with substance without letting the action take over. Creating great character development and story depth are just a few examples how the writers were able to win me over.

The special effects in "Con Air" is great that it made me feel as if were part of that flight right along with the convicts. I commend director Simon West, and producer Jerry Bruckheimer on how well they put together the action sequences and bringing together the tremendous cast without any clash of egos.

Finally, the one thing that signed, sealed, and delivered this movie was the signature song performed by Trisha Yearwood called "How Do I Live." It remains my favorite song even today, five years after "Con Air" was released.

This is an action packed film from start to finish that has a believable plot; as well as comedic moments at times with great one-liners by various actors. I urge everyone to see "Con Air" for a great action film with substance.

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English | Spanish

Release Date:

6 June 1997 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Con Air See more »


Box Office


$75,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$24,131,738, 8 June 1997

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS (8 channels)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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