Con Air Vs. Air Force One: Which 1997 Hijack Movie Is More Epic?


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Nicolas Cage in Con Air; Harrison Ford in Air Force One

On the floor, Con Air and Air Force One look like two motion pictures that do not have rather a lot in widespread, however they’re truly extra related than you in all probability bear in mind. For starters, each have plots that heart across the hijacking of an airplane, each characteristic heroes who will put their lives at risk to save lots of their fellow passengers, and each got here out in the summertime of 1997. With so many similarities (regardless of fairly a number of variations), it was solely a matter of time earlier than I wrote one other movie-against-movie piece to see which movie is extra epic, and it seems now could be that point.

This is a bit refresher for individuals who have both forgotten in regards to the two shamelessly ’90s motion flicks. Launched on June 2, 1997, Con Air options Nicolas Cage as Cameron Poe, a soon-to-be-paroled military ranger who has the misfortune of being on a jail transport airplane that will get hijacked mid-flight. Air Force One was launched on July 25, 1997, and options Harrison Ford as United States President James Marshall who’s aboard the titular airplane when it hijacked by a gaggle of former soviets. With that out of the best way, let’s have a look at which movie is extra epic — Con Air or Air Force One.

Harrison Ford in Air Force On

The Hero

Each of those motion pictures characteristic sturdy main males that are not afraid to tackle the hijackers, however which one is a greater hero — Cameron Poe or James Marshall?

Con Air’s Hero

Regardless of being soft-spoken and a person of few phrases, Cameron Poe proves time and time once more all through Con Air that he’s each a badass and a hero who’s prepared to place his life on the road to guard others (even when they’re a bunch of convicts). Poe is basically a free man and is given loads of alternatives to get off the airplane and go be along with his spouse and younger daughter, however he stays on to thwart the hijackers and save his diabetic cellmate and pal Mike “Child-O” O’Dell. Even after the airplane crash lands on the Las Vegas Strip, Poe continues to chase down the movie’s antagonists till the job is finished.

Air Force One’s Hero

From the very starting of Air Force One, United States President James Marshall is portrayed as take-no-nonsense and heroic world chief, particularly after the rousing speech within the movie’s opening minutes. And Marshall would not actually again down from there, even when he is positioned in an escape pod. The chunk of the film that follows includes Marshall sneaking across the airplane, taking down terrorists, making contact with Washington, and serving to the passengers escape to security. And after he takes out the final of the previous Soviets, Marshall flies the airplane till being compelled to make a crash touchdown. Even then, Marshall places his household first and practically loses his life within the course of.

As a lot as I really like Cameron Poe, this primary spherical goes to James Marshall.

John Malkovich in Con Air

The Villain

You may’t have a superb hero with a worthy villain, and by chance each motion pictures have a number of the most over-the-top unhealthy guys in ’90s cinema. However who’s a extra worthy foe — Cyrus “The Virus” Grissom or Egor Korshunov?

Con Air’s Villain

Cyrus “The Virus” Grissom is likely one of the most insane but well-acted villains in film historical past thanks partially to appearing expertise of the person who introduced the character to life, John Malkovich. The mastermind behind the hijacking of the “Jailbird,” Grissom is each ruthlessly violent and charismatic, a trait that’s seen about midway by way of the film when he pretends to a corrections officer as extra inmates are loaded onto the airplane. And despite the fact that his endgame is a bit missing, Grissom takes command of the display screen similar to he does the airplane, and it is exhausting to high that.

Air Force One’s Villain

All through the ’90s, Gary Oldman was accountable for a few of cinema’s most iconic villains, and his flip as former Soviet soldier turned terrorist Egor Korshunov is close to the highest of the checklist. Korshunov hijacks Air Force One as a bargaining chip for the discharge of Normal Ivan Radek, the deposed dictator of Kazakhstan, who was captured earlier than the film begins. Extraordinarily charming and violent all through the hijacking, Korshunov is crammed each with rage and devotion to his former chief, even when the plan blows up in his face.

Gary Oldman’s portrayal of Egor Korshunov is nice and all, however there is no villain from the ’90s that is going to beat out Cyrus “The Virus” Grissom.

Elya Baskin in Air Force One

The Hijacking Scene

There is no use in discussing a film a few hijacking with out going into element in regards to the airplane being taken over by a gaggle of armed assailants. Fortunately for us, Con Air and Air Force One each characteristic some fairly badass hijacking scenes.

Con Air

Shortly after the primary batch of inmates board the “Jailbird” and take flight for his or her subsequent rendezvous, a handful begin a riot in hopes of taking on the airplane to flee to a non-extradition nation and dwell out the remainder of their lives exterior of jail. The scene is chaotic, violent, and defies logic, however I will be damned if it is not an action-packed and throughout enjoyable scene.

Air Force One

The hijacking scene in Air Force One is a protracted, drawn-out course of that includes a rogue Secret Service killing his colleagues, unlocking a gun locker, and setting of a smoke grenade aboard essentially the most safe airplane on the planet earlier than a gaggle of former Soviet troopers take over the airplane. The sequence during which the hijackers take over the cockpit, kill the pilot and copilot, and narrowly get the airplane again within the air after a run in with the US navy is so good you virtually root for the terrorists to win. Nearly.

Con Air’s chaotic and action-packed hijacking scene stands out, however all the things that needed to go down in Air Force One to tug off the takeover goes unmatched.

Con Air

The Ending

Each motion pictures have fairly memorable — and asinine — endings, however which is extra epic?

Con Air’s Ending

Con Air is almost two hours of fairly stable character constructing, eye-catching particular results, and logic-defying stunts, however nothing within the first 90 minutes compares to the emergency crash touchdown on the Las Vegas Strip. After the principle hijackers one way or the other survive the crash touchdown, they hijack a hearth truck and proceed their plot to keep away from seize, even when it price them their lives. After which we get the second during which Cameron Poe is reunited along with his spouse and meets his daughter for the primary time… all whereas Trisha Yearwood’s rendition of “How Do I Dwell” taking part in within the background.

Air Force One’s Ending

After taking out the terrorists one after the other, President James Marshall lastly secures the Air Force One and prepares to permit his household to flee to a different airplane earlier than Particular Agent Gibbs reveals that he was serving to the terrorists all alongside. The 2 battle on the quickly descending airplane till Marshall is ready to detach himself from his “White Home within the sky” leaving Gibbs to die a violent loss of life because the plane crashes into the Atlantic Ocean. After that, Marshall reunites along with his household because the Air Force’s airplane is renamed Air Force One.

That insane escape sequence in Air Force One continues to be enjoyable to observe, however nothing beats a airplane crashing onto the Las Vegas Strip.

Gary Oldman and Harrison Ford in Air Force One

The Iconic Quote

Going into the ultimate spherical each motion pictures are tied at two apiece, so it is going into extra time to resolve which is extra epic. And what higher approach to settle this than with essentially the most iconic quote from every film.

Con Air’s Quote

Con Air gave us a number of memorable scenes, lots of which I mentioned earlier on this piece, however the one that also will get me 23 years later is the one the place William “Billy Bedlam” Bedford confronts Cameron Poe within the bowels of the airplane. After Bedford begins to mess with bunny that Poe’s daughter gave him, he threatens to disclose his identification to the opposite prisoners. Poe tells him to place the bunny again within the field earlier than the 2 convicts interact in an old school battle to the loss of life. After impaling Bedford, Poe appears to the lifeless man and says: “Why could not put the bunny again within the field?” for some of the ridiculously honest one-liners in film historical past.

Air Force One’s Quote

To not be outdone, Air Force One gave Harrison Ford the chance to have a traditional one-liner of his personal simply as he kills Egor Korshunov and takes again the airplane. With Korshunov tied up in a parachute and cargo strap round his neck, James Marshall decides to provide the terrorist some departing phrases with the now iconic: “Get off my airplane!” line earlier than snapping his neck.

As a lot as I really like listening to Cameron Poe discuss a bunny after killing a person, this spherical has to go to James Marshall along with his demand to get off his airplane.

Harrison Ford, Wendy Crewson, and Liesel Matthews in Air Force One

Con Air Vs. Air Force One: Which One Wins?

Effectively, that definitely was a enjoyable experience (in all probability extra enjoyable for us than the passengers on these hijacked planes), however the showdown as come to an finish. Con Air racked up factors within the “Villain” and “Ending” classes, nevertheless it could not fairly beat out Air Force One, which took the grand prize of being essentially the most epic hijack film from the summer season of 1997 with factors within the “Hero,” “Hijacking,” and “Iconic Quote” classes.

That about does it for me, however fret not as a result of I am positive I will be again someday quickly to match two related motion pictures that occurred to be launched in the identical 12 months.

Which film is your favourite?




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