Scott: There’s a lot of sophistication in the silliness of Airplane!, and many of the best gags are not throwaways, but small laughs that become bigger laughs as more twists are added. The flashback sequence where Ted meets Elaine in a roughneck bar has always been a favorite—Elaine dancing with the sailor with a knife in his back, the Girl Scouts’ epic fistfight, etc.—but the biggest laugh the film got from me this time around was Ted’s Saturday Night Fever routine. It’s funny enough to see Ted sporting John Travolta’s white vest under his jacket, but the way his dance moves grow from improbable to physically impossible (with both legs kicking out from his body like a puppet with an invisible puppeteer) is hilarious enough before the juggling balls make it truly transcendent.
Our Movie Of The Week discussion of Airplane, which began with yesterday’s Keynote, continues with a staff forum discussing what the film gets right that so many of its imitators get wrong. [Read more…]