CATEGORIES Features, Video

There can advantages to spending most of your time in airports and on airplanes. Frequent flier miles, membership clubs with plush waiting areas, and of course, the luxury of always having a Cinnabon wherever you are.

In Jason Reitman's latest film, 'Up in the Air,' George Clooney plays Ryan Bingham, who indulges in many of the perks air travel offers as he ping-pongs the country as a corporate efficiency expert (translation: he fires people all over the USA).

But historically, air travel in movies is usually a dicey experience. Put your seats and tray tables in their upright positions and enjoy the in-flight entertainment: The 10 movie flights you'd be glad not to be on.

There can advantages to spending most of your time in airports and on airplanes. Frequent flier miles, membership clubs with plush waiting areas, and of course, the luxury of always having a Cinnabon wherever you are.

In Jason Reitman's latest film, 'Up in the Air,' George Clooney plays Ryan Bingham, who indulges in many of the perks air travel offers as he ping-pongs the country as a corporate efficiency expert (translation: he fires people all over the USA).

But historically, air travel in movies is usually a dicey experience. Put your seats and tray tables in their upright positions and enjoy the in-flight entertainment: The 10 movie flights you'd be glad not to be on.

(Warning: Some videos contain adult content.)

'Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb' (1964)
Stanley Kubrick's legendary satire on the nuclear scare finds Peter Sellers at his best playing three characters, including President Merkin Muffley, who frantically tries to recall the orders given by a crazed general (Sterling Hayden) to conduct a nuclear air strike, which would set off the Soviet's Doomsday Device. Unfortunately the nifty flying of Major Kong (Slim Pickens) and the destruction of his radio has kept the good ol' boy pilot and his crew on course to drop their bombs, leading to one of the most memorable departures of a plane in movie history.



'Airplane!' (1980)
"I am serious ... and don't call me Shirley." "Joey, do you like movies about gladiators?" "Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue." There are countless memorable lines in this classic spoof of airplane thrillers from the team who gave us 'Top Secret!,' 'The Naked Gun' and 'Hot Shots!;' but arguably the best exchange is Barbara Billingsley (aka June Cleaver) speaking "jive" to two passengers as the "bad fish" has already taken out the pilots and is beginning to affect the passengers.




'Twilight Zone: The Movie' (1983)
A re-imagining of the TV show's "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" episode, John Lithgow plays a distraught passenger who, along with already having a fear of flying, is the only one who notices a gremlin on the wing ripping apart the engine.




'Snakes on a Plane' (2006)
"I'm tired of these mutha ..." Well, you know the rest. Grown into an overnight Web cult phenomenon for its preposterous premise and Samuel L. Jackson -- at the height of his fame -- agreeing to play the lead, this "thriller" finds a gangster executing a dastardly plan to eliminate an FBI witness by unleashing a crate full of venomous snakes on the plane he's on. Brilliant plan, gangster.




'Red Eye' (2005)
Taking the overnight flight back to Miami, Lisa Reisert (Rachel McAdams) gets chummy with the young man sitting next to her (Cillian Murphy) until she learns he's a terrorist operative using her in his plan to assassinate a political figure. Directed by Wes Craven and filled with his patented twists, the movie is one of his better since 'Scream.'




'Passenger 57' (1992)
All seems lost when a psychotic murderer hijacks a commercial plane. But what he didn't know was Wesley Snipes would be on board. Showing off Snipes' martial arts skills for the first time, Snipes famously reminds us to always bet on black.




'Alive' (1993)
Based on the true story of the Uruguayan rugby team that crashed in the Andes mountains in 1972 and the survivors' struggle to stay alive (which included eating the deceased), Ethan Hawke, Josh Hamilton, Vincent Spano and John Malkovich (as the narrator) round out the cast of survivors.




'Point Break' (1991)
In Kathryn Bigelow's gnarly crime caper, Keanu Reeves plays Johnny Utah, an undercover FBI agent who gets in with a group of adrenaline-crazed surfers (led by Patrick Swayze) who rob banks for kicks. Convinced his cover is blown, Johnny reluctantly boards a plane with the group for a skydiving trip. He got a parachute this time, but later on in the movie he's not so lucky.




'Con Air' (1997)
After the success of 'The Rock,' Jerry Bruckheimer and Nicolas Cage re-teamed a year later for this action-adventure about a just-released con/former U.S. Ranger who hitches a ride back home on a prisoner transport plane. But when the craft is overtaken by the convicts, he finds himself as the last hope for the authorities.




'Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom' (1984)
Though the least liked in the 'Indiana Jones' franchise (well, at least before 'Crystal Skull'), the second film has a great opening sequence where Dr. Jones (Harrison Ford) escapes a Shanghai nightclub filled with bad guys and jumps a plane out of the country. Deciding to catch some Z's on the flight, he wakes to find no one flying it. This leads to a clever exit with the use of an inflatable life raft.




And just so the FAA allows us to fly again, here are five flights you'd want to make.


'The Aviator' (2004)
Martin Scorsese's biopic on Howard Hughes stars Leonardo DiCaprio as the eccentric billionaire. After stints as a director and test pilot, Hughes built the military the largest flying boat ever created at the time for use in World War II (which the press dubbed the "Spruce Goose" because the plane was not completed until after the war). Scorsese unfolds Hughes' first and only flight of the plane by intercutting it with his questioning at the Senate War Investigating Committee hearing, where he vowed to leave the country and never return if the plane didn't fly.



'Soul Plane' (2004)
In the same year that a movie on one of the most famous aviators was made, there was also this comedy that meshed 'Airplane!'s' spoofs with hip-hop culture. Piloted by a captain (Snoop Dogg) who's scared of heights and including amenities like a casino and strip club, this is one flight that we wouldn't mind being stuck on.



'Air Force One' (1997)
Though the president's plane does get hijacked in this Wolfgang Petersen thriller, when Harrison Ford is the president rest assured he won't negotiate with terrorists ... he's gonna kick their asses. Going mano-a-mano with Gary Oldman as a Russian terrorist, Ford made everyone in the summer of '97 snarl, "Get off my plane!"



'Top Gun' (1986)
In the movie that made Tom Cruise a superstar and forced us all to hit the gym before playing beach volleyball, Cruise plays a hotshot fighter pilot who's "writing checks his body can't cash." With amazing aerial dogfights, the Don Simpson/Jerry Bruckheimer testosterone-fueled summer movie was created. Take it away Kenny Loggins ...



'The Spirit of St. Louis' (1957)
Jimmy Stewart plays Charles Lindbergh in this retelling of his momentous flight to Paris directed by Billy Wilder. Yes, Lindbergh's transatlantic non-stop crossing was a solo one, but we would have still tried anything to get on it.