Released 1970


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Movie Summary

George Seaton
Airport is based on a novel written by Arthur Haley, the screenplay was written by George Seaton, who also directed the film. This 1970's dramatic film covers a catastrophic 12 hour time period at Lincoln International Airport. Mel Bakersfeld (Burt Lancaster) finds himself teetering on the precipice of stress as he must contend with a neighborhood campaign against the noisy airport, a heavy snowstorm, and a furious wife who is frustrated he is working late. As if that was not enough, a plane is blocking a runway and there is suspicion that a disabled passenger may have a bomb. Capt. Vernon Demerest (Dean Martin) has plans to romance his current fling, stewardess Gwen Meighen (Jacqueline Bisset) regardless of who is or is not married. The cast includes such greats as Maureen Stapleton, Van Heflin, Jean Seberg, and Helen Hayes. Making her movie debut is Patty Poulsen who plays Joan, a stewardess. Ms. Poulsen, a stewardess in her real life, landed the role by winning a beauty contest. Side note: the Boeing 707 was leased to MCA/Universal from a company now known as Fedex, and after changing owners several times, the plane met a tragic end while attempting to land in Brazil nineteen years later.moreless


Metacritic Score

  • 50

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    On some dumb fundamental level, Airport kept me interested for a couple of hours. I can't quite remember why. The plot has few surprises (you know and I know that no airplane pilot...

  • 50

    The New York Times Vincent Canby

    Airport, the film version of Arthur Hailey's novel, is the sort of movie most people mean when they say Hollywood doesn't make movies the way it used to. This isn't just because Ai...

  • 50


    Airport is a handsome, often dramatically involving $10-million epitaph to a bygone brand of filmmaking. However, the ultimate dramatic situation of a passenger loaded jetliner wit...

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Thrillers, Classics, Disaster