Airport (1970) - Rotten Tomatoes

Airport (1970)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

Airport kicked off a series of 1970s disaster movies and spawned the comedy Airplane, a satire on the original. Me Bakersfield (Burt Lancaster) is the workaholic airport manager. Vernon Demerest (Dean Martin) is the dedicated pilot unfaithful to his wife Sarah (Barbara Hale). A blizzard and a bomb scare are the main problems for the crew of the airborne jet. Patroni (George Kennedy ) is the gruff, cigar chomping head of maintenance called on to stand by for a potential disaster. Helen Hayes is the octogenarian stowaway trying to visit her daughter. Guerrero (Van Heflin) is the disturbed mental patient who takes out a $250,000 insurance policy and blows himself up in the lavatory with a bomb. The disalbed plane spends the next two hours trying to make a successful landing. Gwen (Jacqueline Bisset) is the stewardess pregnant with Vernon's child. Lloyd Nolan is the experienced customs agent. Hayes won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the film. Three sequels of increasingly poorer quality followed this box office smash which earned 45 million in the initial release, giving the happy executives at Universal Studios a 35 million dollar profit.more
Rating: G
Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense
Directed By: , ,
Written By: Arthur Hailey, George Seaton
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 15, 1999
Universal Pictures


Burt Lancaster
as Mel Bakersfeld
Dean Martin
as Capt. Vernon Demeres...
Jean Seberg
as Tanya Livingston
Jacqueline Bisset
as Gwen Meighen
George Kennedy
as Joe Patroni
Helen Hayes
as Ada Quonsett
Van Heflin
as D.O. Guerrero
Maureen Stapleton
as Inez Guerrero
Barry Nelson
as Lt. Anson Harris
Dana Wynter
as Mrs. Cindy Bakersfel...
Lloyd Nolan
as Harry Standish
Barbara Hale
as Mrs. Sarah Demerest
Gary Collins
as Cy Jordon
John Findlater
as Peter Coakley
Jessie Royce Landis
as Mrs. Harriet DuBarry...
Jesse Royce Landis
as Mrs. Harriet DuBarry...
Larry Gates
as Commissioner Ackerma...
Peter Turgeon
as Marcus Rathbone
Whit Bissell
as Mr. Davidson
Virginia Grey
as Mrs. Schultz
Paul Picerni
as Dr. Compagno
Robert Patten
as Capt. Benson
Clark Howat
as Bert Weatherby
Lew Brown
as Reynolds
Llana Dowding
as Roberta Bakersfeld
Lisa Gerritsen
as Libby Bakersfeld
Jim Nolan
as Father Lonigan
Jodean Lawrence
as Marie Patroni
Albert Reed
as Lt. Ned Ordway
Dick Winslow
as Mr. Schultz
Mary Jackson
as Sister Felice
Janis Hansen
as Sister Katherine Gra...
Lou Wagner
as Schuyler Schultz
Shelly Novack
as Rollings
Benny Rubin
as Passenger
Michael Stearns
as Passenger
Dallas Mitchell
as Dispatcher
Albert Reed
as Lt. Ned Ordway
Jodean Russo
as Marie Patroni
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Airport

Critic Reviews for Airport

All Critics (19) | Top Critics (4)

Full Review… | October 23, 2004
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic

Full Review… | March 26, 2009
Top Critic

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Full Review… | May 9, 2005
New York Times
Top Critic

Yes, it may be junk, but it's irresistible junk, like cotton candy, chicken nuggets or Gilligan's Island reruns.

Full Review… | September 13, 2012
Creative Loafing

Before there was Airplane! there was Airport, a surprisingly engaging disaster drama that ignited a trend.

Full Review… | August 15, 2011
Cinema Sight

Audience Reviews for Airport


A little hokey to be sure but eminently watchable, Helen Hayes IS endearing but her oscar was surely a sentimental one and really should have gone to Maureen Stapleton who gives a real and very touching portrayal of a woman in an impossible situation. The rest of the cast is fun, Burt Lancaster and Dana Wynter inject a touch of reality as they come to grips with the end of their marriage in a wonderfully played scene. Jacqueline Bissett is young and beautiful, the chicest stewardess to ever fly the friendly skies.

jay nixon

Super Reviewer

One of the original disaster films that spawned an entire new genre of films, Airport is a good little film. However, there's nothing too special about this one. Airport is entertaining, but lacks terrific character development and has cringe worthy dialogue at times. The performances are good, and the cast is pretty impressive, however the plot is hit and miss, and the direction seems unfocused. Nonetheless, if you love a classic thrill ride, this is worth checking out; just don't expect anything great with the film. I liked the film, but it's nothing special. The film set the standard of every other disaster flick that was to follow. The film is a bit too predictable, but in the end it's silly fun. The film tends to go from serious to almost tongue in cheek. Of all the disaster films out there, I find that this is one of the few more unintentionally humorous ones. I'm not saying the picture is bad, but there are moment in the film where you're like, did this happen? Considering that this is drama, you'd expect something a little more serious. This film could have been much better, and the screenwriters could have toned down on the cheesy dialogue and poor tongue in cheek moments. Otherwise, this is an entertaining picture that delivers effective thrills from start to finish, and despite its flaws, it's worth watching you love 1970's cinema. Just don't expect a great film. Enjoyable, but you can see that the film had the potential of being so much more than what it turned out to be.

Alex roy

Super Reviewer

The first of the Airport disaster films. I remember seeing most of them on Sunday afternoons on TV as a young kid. Big budget blockbusters for the time with an all star cast! I think there were three sequels in the end Airport '75, '77 and '79 concorde! Check them out, still pretty good films and few disaster films about planes have been made since to this standard.
Not too mention it inspired two of the funniest spoof films (Airplane) as well!

Dean King

Super Reviewer

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