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4.7 out of 5 stars
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4.7 out of 5 stars
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 24 August 2014
A transport aeroplane carrying an assortment of men crash lands in the Sahara desert, these men must group together in spite of their varying indifference's and build another plane out of the wreckage.

It perhaps, on the surface, doesn't sound much does it? We as viewers are asked to spend over two hours watching these men interact with each other with differing results. The location stays the same, it is just sand, sun, and men awaiting death. Yet the film is one of the best exponents of the character piece because the characters each have their own personal hang ups. Be it carrying scars from the war, or a class difference of upbringing, or that demon addiction to alcohol, these men have to overcome themselves before they can overcome the biggest hurdle in front of them.

Boasting what reads as a who's who of great character actors, The Flight Of The Phoenix becomes a riveting watch because we feel the stifled nature of their plight, because we are blessed to have these wonderful actors fully realising the great writing from Lukas Heller. It is absorbing, it is very sharp, and fittingly we get a twist that makes the ending even more rewarding.

Highly Recommended. 8/10
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on 27 January 2016
Good film for a wet Sunday afternoon
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on 26 December 2011
This is the original film with James Stewart. I have also seen the remake with Dennis Quaid, wich is also a good film, probably having more bang for your bucks. But the original probably wins out on style and class. The heat of the desert and the hot tempers of the protaganists certainly comes across in spades. Both films will have their followers, but I enjoy both interpretations of this excellent story. So fix yourself a 'nice tall cold one' and enjoy the show (whichever one you choose).
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on 28 October 2011
I first saw this film some years ago and always watched it on television when it was being broadcast. I liked the story and the acting. I am aware there are newer versions of this film, but I like this original version because of its talented actors. It has suspense as well as drama, with a positive and happy ending to a troubled Air Crew. Even a monkey does his bit to add to the enjoyment of this film. I can recommend this version over later versions.
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on 5 August 2009
This film is a classic. A superb cast act brilliantly a twist on a rather well-worn storyline. The film is almost stolen by Ian Bannen who cracks so many good lines he livens up what could become a rather heavy-going drama. Nonetheless the stellar cast ensure that the action moves apace. As to the remake - don't bother. Watch this one.
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This original Flight of the Phoenix, fronted by the by then veteran Jimmy Stewart, who is one of my all-time favourites, remains ones my father's very favourite films - and he has no interest in movies, to the point where he generally doesn't know one film from the other, apart from the classic few - Great Escape, Bridge on the River Kwai etc but this is still the one he enjoys the most.

It's a film that manages to still remain cross-generational, as I really like it too - a wonderful mixture of high drama, tension, pure survival and engineering. This might make it more a film for the boys, old and young, but that is just as applicable to the Great Escape which is a true family film, as this is, too.

Robert Aldrich's direction is first class, with real, wind-strewn sand, broken down plane and heat. That sense of reality makes it more believable, you are almost a fly in the desert watching these men go about their sole and increasingly treacherous quest for sheer survival.

The cast list is exemplary, too. Joining Stewart is a sea of famous faces, from Dickie Attenborough, George Kennedy, Peter Finch, Ernest Borgnine and of course, one of the outstanding performances of the era, from Hardy Kruger, the German who is initially so distrusted but who goes on to become their saviour. Ian Bannen is also memorable as the confrontational Scot.

It's long but only in the value for money stakes - you get a lot of film and is never less than interesting, rising to compulsive viewing at its peaks. Its finale is also one of the most uplifting in cinema history.

There's almost no point in comparing this classic with its 2004 remake, except perhaps that if you did like John Moore's effort, with Dennis Quaid, forget any indifferences you may have toward older films and see this, vastly superior original. This is a genuine 5 starrer, that's more like a 2.
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on 21 September 2014
I've seen this film maybe a dozen times and for me is still one of the best all time movies. I don't know about the remake as I haven't
seen it but this one couldn't have chosen a better cast with outstanding performances ffrom all.
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on 30 December 2013
I had heard some bad reports about the remake of this favorite of mine (remakes rarely work anyway) so I played it safe and bought the original. It's full of star names and a great story. Highly recommended.
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on 14 April 2016
Very Good
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on 12 June 2016
The original with an all star cast. An oil drilling team reconstruct a crashed airplane into a smaller flying 'model'. Almost credible. Strong stuff, best watched in small segments.
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