The Full Wiki

More info on The Concorde ... Airport '79

The Concorde ... Airport '79: Map

Advertisements
  
  

Wikipedia article:

Map showing all locations mentioned on Wikipedia article:



The Concorde ... Airport '79 is a 1979 Americanmarker disaster film (in the UK, it was released a year later as Airport '80: The Concorde). The film was the fourth and final installment of the Airport series. Panned by critics, the film made only US$13 million at the box office.

Plot

Kevin Harrison (Robert Wagner), an arms dealer, attempts to destroy an American-owned Concorde supersonic transport on its maiden flight after one of the passengers Maggie Whelan (Susan Blakely) learns of his weapons sales to communist countries during the Cold War. After the Concorde manages to escape destruction by remotely-controlled missiles and rogue fighter aircraft, Harrison attempts to de-pressurize the aircraft at altitude, forcing it to crash in the Alps.

The film opens with a shot of the Concorde taking off de Gaulle Airport in Paris. During flight Captain Paul Metrand makes conversation with Isabelle (Sylvia Kristel), the purser. They descended into Dulles Airport when the Airpeace activists drift over the runway where the Concorde was landing. The balloon is avoided and the Concorde lands.

Maggie Whalen (Blakely) then recaps the arrival of the Concorde and reports on the "Goodwill" flight on the Concorde the following day, which leads to a story of future boyfriend Kevin Harrison (Wagner) and his Buzzard missile project. Carl Parker then shows up at Ms Whalen's house with a claim about documents of an illegal arms deals. Carl then gets shot before a passerby triggers a fire alarm, scaring the assailant away.

Capt. Joe Patroni decides to introduce himself to Captain Metrand. He also says good night to Isabelle (not knowing she is there), because of the smell of female perfume coming from his room. The next morning, Maggie is seen with Kevin at the Lincoln Memorial telling him about her ordeal and the rumor of documents. Kenvin denies it and claims someone is trying to frame him. He sends Maggie off in a limo alone while he waits for his business partner Willie Halpern to arrive in another. After asking him about his night, he says that Carl Parker is dead, to which Willie asks if they got the documents back. With a depressed sign and a no, Kevin asks what time the next launch is for the Buzzard is. Willie replies 6:30, for which Kevin replies he wants it delayed until 8 o'clock and reprogram the drone test.

Paul and Joe arrive at the airplane discussing their flying careers as they board the aircraft. It is difficult to know who is the Pilot-in-Command as both Patroni and Metrand are captains. David Warner plays the part of Peter O'Neill as the 2nd officer or flight engineer who is living under the thumb of a controlling girlfriend. Later in the preflight, Isabelle brings coffee to the flight deck crew where Patroni upon catching a whiff of Isabelle's perfume, puts 2 and 2 together and realises that was the perfume he smelled the previous night, thereby prompting Isabelle to yell at Paul.

Kevin, playing the part of the concerned boyfriend, surprises Maggie at the airline check-in desk to see her off before she boards the mobile lounge for the aircraft. He asks if the documents showed up, and she laughs and says they haven't before he kisses her goodbye. Just as he's walking away, Carl Parker's wife rolls up in a wheelchair and delivers the documents as promised to Maggie just before she steps on the mobile lounge. She is seen looking them over on the lounge as Kevin walks along the side of it looking through the terminal window as the lounge moves out towards the aircraft. After she looks at them, she realises that Kevin lied to her (She later threatens to expose Kevin to her news bureau when she arrives in Paris).

The passengers board the aircraft. An ambulatory heart is boarded for a youth in Paris accompanied by the child's mother. Several notable personalities play the part of fictional celebs. The Concorde takes off from Washington/Dulles enroute to Paris where unbeknownst to the flight crew and passengers, an off-course SAM is headed straight for them. Meanwhile, Kevin Harrison is at company headquarters, (knowing he was behind the missile going off course), acts concerned, tells his controllers to alert the government. The USAF scrambles F-15 fighter jets from presumably Langley or Andrews AFB to intercept the missile just as the missile locks on the Concorde. After a series of evasive maneuvers, the F-15 shot down the missile before it collides with the Concorde.

Later on the flight, as the Concorde is approaching the European coastline, an unmarked/terrorist, F-4 Phantom (sent by Harrison and his pal Andre Rubel in Paris) engages the Concorde as French Air Force Mirages scramble to help the Concorde. After a few evasive moves by the Concorde, and a move to decoy the heatseeking missiles fired by the Phantom, the Mirages shoot down the F-4 and the Concorde continues to Paris, although to it alternate, Le Bourget instead of Charles de Gaulle. The Concorde reaches the French coastline and flies to Le Bourget and lands with a damaged hydraulic system. The barrier nets stop the crippled plane (taking 3 to do it). The two captains celebrate with a cigar in the flight deck. Captain Metrand and Isabelle invite Joe for dinner. Meanwhile, Kevin arrives at de Gaulle where Andre meets him at the aircraft. He apologizes to Kevin but assures him he has another plan in the works.

Joe, Paul and Isabelle meet for dinner with a date for Joe promised by Paul. Meanwhile, Maggie meets Kevin for dinner. He promises to go public with the documents but attempts to bribe Maggie into "polishing" his statement up. Rollie, a mechanic places a times device in the cargo door control unit, timed to open during flight. He is paid to leave France with his payoff. He is told to enjoy himself by Kevin, and that it's better to be rich.

Joe and Paul are conducts the preflight when Peter tells them of his dinner last night, a little Escargot, roast pork, and chocolate mousse for dessert. Paul asks him what he's going to do about his possessive girlfriend. He remarks that he doesn't know of such a woman (implying that he's broken up with her). As the passengers come aboard, a well-dressed woman (played by Charo) comes aboard attempting to smuggle a dog with her. She is caught by an alert Isabelle and leaves the aircraft. Just then, back inside the terminal, Rollie, the mechanic who sabotaged the Concorde, is in line at the security checkpoint. He almost makes it through when a wad of French Francs falls out of his pant leg. The x-ray technician spots it and attempts to give it back to him. He pretends not hear him and runs off, making the security guard suspicious and tells his partner to call security and chases him through the terminal. He breaks through an alarmed door and triggers a siren. He runs out onto the ramp towards the runway, the very runway where the Concorde is taking off. He runs into the aircraft's wake, which blows all of the money he had attached to his chest. The aircraft is in flght heading to Moscow when the automatic device opens the door in flight. Several instinctive situations make the crew suspicious, such as a sudden air pressure change, a whistling noise from below. When Captain Metrand goes back to investigate, he sees the carpet tear down the middle of the aisle signifying the fuselage is under tremendous stress and that the aircraft is about break apart. The Cargo door is ripped off, and the aircraft suddenly dives towards the ground, spiraling out of control. The cargo door breaking loose punched a hole in the bottom of the fuselage, extensively damaging the aircraft and ripping the floor of the cabin from the aircraft. The airline's founder is pulled into the hole, where he cleverly remarks that he "had the best seat in the house". The seat acts a protective plug for the hole in the floor. The pilots attempt to fly to Innsbruck for an emergency landing, but soon realize they don't have the fuel to make it. Paul realises that they're flying towards a ski area he used to go to in the French/Swiss Alps and that they could make a gear-up landing on a mountain-side. The aircraft makes a long approach to the landing site, while the local ski patrol marks a runway. The aircraft lands in the snow patch, intact on the makeshift runway and slides to stop buried in snow. The rescue workers approach the aircraft and break through the ceiling with axes. The interior collapses from the breakages in the ceiling. The crew attempts to evacuate people to the surface through the holes in the ceilings. Maggie is about to be taken from the aircraft while being unconscious. Not knowing where she was, she is directed towards the ladder, she suddenly turns around to go back retrieve the documents. She then leaves the aircraft and reports of the accident on a live on-scene news report and also gives details of a major story that is she about to release. Kevin Harrison is listening to this on his jet back to the US, for which he turns a gun on himself and commits suicide while in flight. Back at the crash site, the last of the crew leaves the aircraft as the roof of the aircraft cabin is about to collapse. The fuselage caves in and explodes from the leaking fuel, while the tail of the aircraft then falls on its side with the fire burning at its base. The final scene closes with a silhouette of a Concorde in flight.

Cast



Inconsistencies and criticism

This movie is the fourth and last sequel to Airport. Like the previous sequel Airport '77 this movie is also regarded as unrealistic due to the highly unlikely plot. A number of obvious continuity errors and inconsistencies are found, contradicting both the storyline and the earlier movies.

In previous "Airport" movies, Joe Patroni, the character played by George Kennedy, was the chief mechanic for Trans World Airlines at Chicago's Lincoln Airport (on loan to Trans Global Airlines) (Airport); Vice President of Operations for Columbia Airlines in Los Angeles (Airport 1975); and served in an undefined role to businessman Phillip Stevens in Palm Beach, Florida (Airport '77). In Airport '79, Patroni is a pilot working for Federation World Airways, who is qualified to fly the Concorde.

There are several errors in the movie concerning the configuration of the nose of Concorde during takeoff (5°) and landing (12.5°), during its takeoff and landing in Dulles Airportmarker and Charles de Gaulle Airportmarker, as prescribed in the flight manual.

After suffering an explosive decompression toward the end of the film, Munich Center describes the Concorde's position as "40 miles northwest of Patscherkofelmarker." The Concorde subsequently makes an emergency landing in a snow field at Patscherkofel, because it lacks the fuel necessary to make it to Innsbruckmarker, the nearest airfield. Patscherkofel is, however, 9 miles south of Innsbruck; if the Concorde could reach Patscherkofel, it should have been able to reach Innsbruck.

Allmovie's Bruce Eder interpreted the film as a self-parody due to the film's outrageous premise, situations, and casting. Additionally, the film's underlying premise of a "good will" flight to Moscowmarker in celebration of the (then) upcoming 1980 Summer Olympics was seriously undermined by the real-life Soviet war in Afghanistan which began almost contemporaneously with the film's release and the resulting U.S.-led 1980 Summer Olympics boycott, making the film a victim of extremely bad timing.

Extended version broadcast on ABC Network in 1982

When ABC aired the movie in 1982, several new scenes were added to the film:

  • Several scenes featured an American detective in Washington who interviews Carl Parker's wife in connection with her husband's murder, and an Interpolmarker investigator in Paris who interviews Mr. & Mrs. Eli Sands concerning the attacks on the Concorde.


  • A conversation takes place between the flight crew during the initial ferry flight from Paris to Washington; we learn that Paul Metrand, while in French Indochina consorted with a prostitute named "the Tarantula", whom Joe Patroni knew when he was fighting in the Vietnam War. (The scene where Patroni talks about the Tarantula was left in the original theatrical release.)




  • Kevin Harrison opens a public housing project in a largely Black neighborhood of the Washington D.C. area.


  • A brief shot shows the Concorde's loss of hyrdaulic fluid after the near-miss over the French Coast.


  • Several brief shots showing an electrical fire near the Concorde's fuel transfer switch prior to and after its crash-landing at Patscherkofelmarker, Austria. These scenes implied that the explosion caused after the crew and passengers evacuated the aircraft was due to this fire.


  • Additional scenes involving Maggie Whelen and Kevin Harrison are added, including a romantic scene where she reveals that she is pregnant with Harrison's child. The dinner scene in Paris is extended, with Harrison making reference to being in the Left Hand of God.


  • Maggie Whelan is shown doing a news broadcast from Moscowmarker revealing the contents of the documents after the destruction of the Concorde.


  • Kevin Harrison does not commit suicide on his private jet in the ABC version, but does so at an impromptu press conference in Washington, D.C.marker, almost before the end of Maggie Whelan's broadcast in Moscow. In this version, Harrison again refers to being in the Left Hand of God before pulling the trigger.


  • Scenes with Charo were cut, as were scenes showing Jimmie Walker smoking cannabis in the lavatory.


  • Certain scenes had profanity either edited out or dubbed with less-profane language.


Trivia

  • Many of the flying sequences in the movie feature Concorde . Coincidentally this aircraft, operating as Air France Flight 4590marker, is the same Concorde that crashed into a hotel after take-off from Charles de Gaulle International Airportmarker on July 25 2000 killing all on board, and four on the ground. This accident's effect on public perception, among other economic factors, led to permanent retirement of the Concorde aircraft in 2003.


  • This marked the third and final time that both Eddie Albert and Robert Wagner would both co-star together, and were back working at Universal.


  • This is the only Airport film not to feature Edith Head as the Costume Designer.


See also



References

  1. Airport - Box Office History
  2. IMDB: Trivia for The Concorde ... Airport '79
  3. ConcordeSST.Com: Information about the Concorde used in the movie.

External links




Embed code: at The Full Wiki'>
Advertisements






Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address
Message