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The Flight of the Phoenix (1965)

James Stewart , Richard Attenborough , Robert Aldrich  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (135 customer reviews)

Price: $16.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: James Stewart, Richard Attenborough, Peter Finch, Hardy Krüger, Ernest Borgnine
  • Directors: Robert Aldrich
  • Writers: Lukas Heller, Trevor Dudley Smith
  • Producers: Robert Aldrich, Walter Blake
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Anamorphic, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Dubbed, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Dolby Digital 1.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English, Spanish
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: 20th Century Fox
  • DVD Release Date: May 20, 2003
  • Run Time: 142 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (135 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008MTVZ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,464 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Flight of the Phoenix" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

James Stewart stars as the captain of a plane that has crashed in the desert and must be fixed on the double before all crew members die.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
96 of 97 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
It seems so long since I've reviewed what I consider to be a 5 star film...maybe too long, so I decided to review one of my favorites in The Flight of the Phoenix (1965), a tense and wonderfully entertaining, character driven film about a small, yet diverse, group of men struggling to not only overcome the adversity of a harsh and deadly environment, but also having to come to terms with each other, the strengths and flaws inherent within themselves, to complete a nearly impossible task, one that will determine their very survival.

Based on a popular novel by Elleston Trevor, the film is incredibly well directed by Robert Aldrich (whom I'm a big fan of), who also did Hush... Hush, Sweet Charlotte (1965), The Dirty Dozen (1967), and The Longest Yard (1974), to name a few. The film boasts an impressive cast, including James Stewart, Richard Attenborough, and Peter `I'm as mad as hell, and I'm not going to take it anymore!' Finch. Also appearing are Ernest Borgnine, Hardy Krüger, George Kennedy, and Ian Bannen.

As the film begins, we see a small group of men, some military men, but mostly crewmembers who work on an oil field located somewhere in the Sahara Desert, preparing to leave by plane, one piloted by Captain Frank Towns (Stewart), a world weary airman who's found himself in the position of shuttling men and equipment between outposts in rickety contraptions that resemble airplanes, along with his navigator (who has a penchant for the booze), Lew Morgan (Attenborough). The flight begins well enough, but soon a sandstorm disables the engines, and the plane is forced to crash land in the desert, miles away from any type of civilization, including that precious commodity many of us take for granted being water.
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36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unhappy Landings ! October 6, 2003
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I'm sure that many movie buffs will remember this fine, suspenseful thriller from the 60s. Jimmy Stewart is flying a cargo plane with an interesting assortment of male passengers across the Sahara desert, and he decides to battle through an oncoming sandstorm. The sandstorm wins ! The plane crash-lands in an ocean of sand--not without casualty--and our heroes are stranded, with limited supplies, under a brutal sun. The men waste several precious days on the assumption that help is on the way. They eventually realise that survival will depend on their own resilience and ingenuity.
Of course, we have one of the finest American actors in the lead, but Mr. Stewart is ably supported by a blue-chip international cast, including Richard Attenborough, Peter Finch, Hardy Kruger, Ernest Borgnine and Ian Bannen. As the sun gets hotter and with no rescue party in sight, this unfortunate group displays all of the human qualities that arise in desperate situations--resentment, fear, arrogance, assignment of blame, madness, cowardice and courage.
Richard Attenborough is the sensible voice of reason and compromise, which makes the scene where he finally "loses it", even more compelling. Peter Finch is the typical British "stiff upper lip " officer--stubborn and brave-- though I doubt that this role was much of a challenge to such a talented actor. Ernest Borgnine gets to chew up a little scenery as a guy who is pretty unhinged even before the plane crash--that blazing sun doesn't do him any good at all ! Well--it's 1965 and you need someone to play a brainy, cold, arrogant German--Hardy Kruger, come on down ! The other actors are excellent--Ian Bannen, in particular, is effective as a guy who would get under your skin even at the North Pole !
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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine portrait of the survival of the human spirit October 16, 1999
By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
A fine film that ranks right up there with the best adventure classics ever made, "Flight..." is a gritty, realistically rendered tale of survival in the Sahara. With the famous California sand dune field ("Return of the Jedi" and many others have been shot there through the years) on the border near Yuma, Arizona convincingly substituting for a vast, nameless Saharan erg, "Flight.." portrays the various reactions of a mixed group of down-and-out oil camp workers as they struggle to survive against all odds.
The rebuilding of the wrecked C-82 Packet transport aircraft (forerunner of the more famous C-119 Flying Boxcar) is rendered in believable detail and is fascinating to watch. Hardy Kruger does a fine turn as the frustrated "engineer" who convinces the group to attempt to rebuild the aircraft while unconciously hiding a terrible secret that is not revealed until late in the movie. The rest of the cast is uniformly excellent. All are convincing characters with realistic motivations that make them very believable.
For trivia buffs (and as partly mentioned in previous posts), the "Phoenix" aircraft is initially shown as a real aircraft built from C-82 components, but a crash of this airplane during filming forced the producers to replace it with a slightly modified O-47, an extremely rare observation aircraft that is currently being restored at the Planes of Fame museum in Chino, CA. The change can be seen on-screen for those watching closely, but the two aircraft profiles are close enough to one another that the change is not jarring.
A fine film in every respect: realistic, suspenseful, well acted and directed, "Flight of the Phoenix" is commercial Hollywood craftsmanship at its best.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A great adventure/survival story and far better than the remake. Jimmy Stewart is great in this movie.
Published 9 days ago by Kenneth Kavula
5.0 out of 5 stars ... Flight of the Phoenix is one of Jimmy Stewart Finest performances...
The Flight of the Phoenix is one of Jimmy Stewart Finest performances and the all star cast keeps this gripping adventure film moving . Read more
Published 10 days ago by Richard A Weddle
5.0 out of 5 stars *****
James Stewart at his best!!!
Published 18 days ago by Bill Luke
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
super movie. The original is still the best
Published 26 days ago by Markus
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Good service and the movie is very exciting.
Published 1 month ago by John T. Griffin
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by Melvin Hill
4.0 out of 5 stars the orginal is much better than the remake
As usual, the orginal is much better than the remake!
Published 2 months ago by Me
5.0 out of 5 stars One of those great movies with a small group of men trying to survive...
Which means that generally, a movie like that can't fail, and this one delivers the goods! In fact, if it weren't for a couple of tiny flaws near the beginning of the movie, I... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Joseph W. Szilagy
5.0 out of 5 stars Very engrossing film, I enjoyed it
I bought this for the heck of it. The reviews showed that this original was better than the remake done in the 90s (which I have not seen). Read more
Published 3 months ago by YeahSoMaybe?
5.0 out of 5 stars Great movie.
Excellent movie. One I will probably watch over and over. The remakes will never be able to compare to the real Jimmy Stewart one.
Published 3 months ago by Amazon Customer
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