Even the most choosy critics need to admit that Airplane! 1980 was a trend-setting, hilarious and zany comedy. With the foundational story of an airplane disaster, the film also attracted audiences with its subplots of heavy-handed films in the decades, and the participations of big stars. Until now, there is still no other movie to be compared with this disaster movie spoof, which stands out for being the most surprising comedy ever made.
This was a small surprise that the film is only rated PG for the mention of many sensational problems in the current society. For example, some outstanding features of hints in the films mentioned porno magazines, swear words, suicides, drug use, sexual deviancy, discrimination, topless women, and other bad sides of the society. Not until mid 1984 did the PG-13 ratting arrive for fairness.
The film is revolutionary for its clever of manufacturing, to insert sensational problems in jokes. As unexpected side-effect, the film destroyed the Irwin Allen-styled, a big budget disaster film genre for a long time later.
The film was inspired by at least four sources, including Flight into Danger (1956), Terror in the Sky (1971), The Crowded Sky (1960), and Zero Hour! (1957). The storyline is filled with a well-built parody, with the combination of verbal literalism, sexual double entendres, gross-out, good sense of humor, gags, deadpan and puns.
After being released in the summer of 1980, this film quickly became a big hit for its writing and directing team of Jerry Zucker, Jim Abraham, and David Zucker. It was screen written by the famous writer John Landis. By the clever skill of manufacturing, this disaster film become a good source of entertaining but still meaningful and memorable.
This was a mega hit at that time, although it took just more than a month for the filing, and cost only $3.5 million for the budget. However, surprisingly, the domestic revenue counted climbed up to $83.4 million. With the success, there was no reason for not producing the next season of the film. And it is the reason why the next part coming up as Airplain II: The Sequel (1982) by director Ken Finkleman.