Watch the 15 Best Airplane Movies of All Time!

Are you a fan of movies that take you on a thrilling ride through the skies? Whether you’re an aviation enthusiast or just looking for a gripping story set above the clouds, airplane movies are sure to give you that adrenaline rush from the comfort of your seat. Here’s a list of the 15 best airplane movies that are a must-watch for everyone! 

Airplane movies

1. Top Gun (1986) 

What’s it about? Dive into the world of fighter pilots with ‘Top Gun’. It’s a story about Maverick, played by Tom Cruise, who pushes the limits at the U.S. Navy’s Fighter Weapons School. Why watch it? The intense aerial scenes and a heart-pounding storyline make it unforgettable. 

2. Airplane! (1980) 

What’s it about? This hilarious film will keep you laughing with its clever jokes and spoofs about flying. What’s special? It’s a light-hearted comedy that makes fun of the typical dramas surrounding airplane disasters. 

3. Con Air (1997) 

What’s it about? Imagine a plane taken over by some of the most dangerous inmates. Nicolas Cage plays a parolee who ends up on the wrong flight. Why it’s a must-see? It’s full of action-packed sequences and suspense that will keep you hooked. 

4. Flight (2012) 

What’s it about? Denzel Washington stars as a pilot who performs a miraculous landing saving nearly everyone on board. But, what’s the catch? His heroics face scrutiny over his sobriety. This film is a gripping exploration of heroism and accountability. 

5. Sully (2016) 

What’s it about? Based on a true story, watch Captain Sully Sullenberger (played by Tom Hanks) glide his disabled plane onto the chilly waters of the Hudson River. What makes it great? It’s a heroic and emotional depiction of quick thinking and bravery. 

6. The Aviator (2004) 

What’s it about? Leonardo DiCaprio shines as Howard Hughes, the billionaire aviator, movie producer, and industrialist who faced his own battles with mental illness. Why it’s inspiring? It showcases Hughes’ determination and innovations in aviation. 

7. Alive (1993) 

What’s it about? This survival drama tells the real-life tale of a Uruguayan rugby team stranded in the Andes following a plane crash. What’s to learn? It’s a story of perseverance and human spirit in the face of dire circumstances. 

8. Red Eye (2005) 

What’s it about? A woman is kidnapped by a fellow passenger (played by Cillian Murphy) aboard a nighttime flight. What stands out? The intense thriller will keep you on the edge of your seat with its clever plot twists. 

9. Executive Decision (1996) 

What’s it about? Terrorists hijack a commercial airplane to release a lethal virus. Watch Kurt Russell and Halle Berry work together in a nail-biting operation to thwart their plans. Why watch? It combines tension and action that’s perfect for thriller enthusiasts. 

10. Non-Stop (2014) 

What’s it about? Liam Neeson plays an air marshal who faces a threat while mid-flight from New York City to London. What’s the twist? He must identify the perpetrator while being framed as a hijacker. It’s a mystery that unfolds at 40,000 feet! 

11. Catch Me If You Can (2002) 

What’s it about? This film isn’t just about airplanes, but its charming lead, Frank Abagnale Jr. (played by Leonardo DiCaprio), poses as a Pan Am pilot among his many cons. Why watch it? It’s a fascinating cat-and-mouse game between Abagnale and an FBI agent (Tom Hanks). The film mixes drama, comedy, and a dash of romance with some scenes set against the glamorous jet-setting era of the 1960s. 

12. United 93 (2006) 

What’s it about? A real-time account of the flight that was hijacked during the September 11 attacks, but where the passengers fought back. What makes it impactful? It’s a powerful, respectful tribute to the individuals aboard, portrayed with intense realism and emotional depth. The film immerses you in the passengers’ journey, showcasing their bravery and desperation. 

13. Snakes on a Plane (2006) 

What’s it about? FBI agent Neville Flynn (Samuel L. Jackson) boards a flight from Hawaii to Los Angeles to escort a witness in protective custody. However, the plane becomes a slithering nightmare when hundreds of venomous snakes are released mid-flight. Why it’s entertaining? It’s an over-the-top thriller that combines horror, action, and a bit of humor—especially with Jackson’s iconic line delivery. 

14. The Flight of the Phoenix (1965) 

What’s it about? After a crash-landing in the Sahara Desert, survivors, including an airplane designer, attempt to build a new plane from the wreckage to escape. Why watch? It’s a classic tale of survival and innovation, showcasing human spirit and ingenuity under the most dire conditions. The 2004 remake also offers a modern take on this inspiring story. 

15. The Terminal (2004) 

What’s it about? Tom Hanks plays Viktor Navorski, a man from a fictional Eastern European country, who finds himself stranded in JFK Airport when his country undergoes a coup. What’s to love? It’s a heartwarming story of resilience and kindness that occurs within the confines of an airport terminal, with Hanks delivering a compelling performance as a man navigating a new life in transit.

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