Sunday, March 29, 2009

Pinch-Hitting for Pedro Borbon

Last night, I was watching Airport 1975 on AMC. I had DVRed it from earlier in the night. I got about an hour and a half through when I apparently hit the remote’s “live” button, which halts the DVRed programming and switches it with whatever is being currently broadcast on the channel you were last watching. The live broadcast happened to be Airport ’77, again on AMC. For about twenty minutes, I had no idea I’d switched movies, in small part because I was not paying close attention but in much larger part because the movies are pretty damn similar — corny, overdramatic, full of people flailing about in 70s clothes. You’d think the tip-off would have been that the Airport ’77 plane crashes to the bottom of the ocean for some reason, but that could have just as easily happened in Airport 1975, for all I know. The first indication I noticed that something strange had happened was the sudden disappearance of Myrna Loy’s character — the classy alcoholic who tosses back boilermakers as disaster draws near. “Where is Myrna Loy?” I asked. “Did she die off-screen? Does she have alcohol poisoning?”

All in all, Airport 1975 turned out to be a pretty lousy movie. What can you say about a movie whose emotional climax occurs in Salt Lake City? I have to say, however, that the underwater sequence I accidentally spliced in actually made the movie better, inexplicable though it might have been. I suggest everyone watch it in this manner.

A final question: Why on earth was this series of movies called Airport when all of the plot points anyone would give a damn about happen on the airplane?

5 comments:

  1. Pedro C6:48 PM

    The original [i]Airport[/i] took place in and around a single airport, and most of the main characters were groundside personal. Plus, the original movie is based off a novel called [i]Airport[/i].

    If it makes you feel better, the parody versions of these films were called [i]Airplane![/i].

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  2. Oh, I'm aware of Airplane! parodying them and I know about Arthur Hailey's novel. I just think it's odd that the non-Hailey movies would have evolved to eschew the people in the airport more and more with each sequel.

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  3. Myrna Loy! Yay!

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  4. Even if it's Myrna Loy essentially playing a sadder, less developed version of Nora Charles?

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  5. Hmmm... yes. Because then I can watch The Best Years of Our Lives afterward to make up for it. So: yay!

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