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Monday, November 2, 2015

Airport '77 (1977)

A luxury Boeing 747 carrying art treasures is hijacked by thieves but by flying too low to avoid radar detection, it hits an offshore oil drilling platform and crashes into the sea. It's a race against time as sea water slowly penetrates the submerged airliner while waiting to be rescued. The third entry in the AIRPORT franchise, this is the second best in the series. It doesn't have that cut rate cheapness that AIRPORT 1975 had and it's superior in every way to the worst of the batch, THE CONCORDE - AIRPORT 79. The premise is intriguing enough to override the worst parts of the film and the logistics of rescuing a submerged plane and the execution of the rescue are compelling. On the downside are the trite dialogue and (mostly) poor acting. There are so many minor characters that we don't get to know so how can we possibly care about them? The actors seem to know they only have a few minutes to make an impression so they overact. Somehow Lee Grant as an unhappy bitchy wife manages to give a characterization that resembles an actual human being. The rest of the cast doesn't fare so well. Directed by Jerry Jameson. The massive cast includes Jack Lemmon, James Stewart, Olivia De Havilland, Christopher Lee, Brenda Vaccaro, Darren McGavin, Joseph Cotten, George Kennedy, Kathleen Quinlan, Robert Foxworth, Pamela Bellwood, Monica Lewis, Robert Hooks and James Booth.  

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