Airplane! (1980)


David and Jerry Zucker and Jim Abrahams direct Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty and Leslie Nielsen in this spoof of the disaster movie, packed with relentless gags. 

A fixture of my childhood… most of the jokes are so simple even an immature sense of humour can understand the mechanics behind them and they all come so thick and fast that a child is never bored. As an adult, nostalgic affection aside, it is a little too dumb. I chuckled and smiled a lot during my last few viewings but the magic was gone. The absence of belly laughs was felt. The Naked Gun still gets me… they sophisticated the formula a little more by that point. Maybe I’m dead inside. I remember Julie Hagerty’s voice being squeakier, the nonce pilot joke being more developed, Lloyd Bridge air traffic controller becoming more and more depraved. It is all still there just not quite as powerful as my memories convinced me it all was. My only fresh take home from this revisit was just how much Otto the Inflatable Autopilot looks like Jon Hamm when he is bemused in Mad Men.


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