Film of the Day: Airplane!

(C) Paramount Pictures

Recommending this comedy classic? Surely we can’t be serious?

The classic disaster movie spoof starring Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty and Leslie Nielsen is one of the greats in comic filmmaking and its accolades speak for itself: named one of the 500 greatest movies of all time by EmpireAirplane! also came number one in a poll of the funniest film comedies in the same magazine; the second best comedy according to another poll for Channel 4 (it being the best US comedy, being beaten by Life of Brian); and preserved by the US Library of Congress.

But perhaps the best reason for picking it, is that in the last Radio Times published before his death a week ago, Barry Norman wrote a piece on why he loved the film himself, saying, “see for yourselves. Actually, you should see it all for yourselves because it’s fast, slick, bawdy and unashamedly derivative of all manner of movie genres. Above all, though, it’s very funny.”

Airplane! is on Film4 at 19.20.