Con Air Airplane Thriller Movies

History of Con Air Thriller Movies

The con air airplane thriller genre, has been around for a long time. Since the late 1960s, thriller movies that feature airliners or other types of aircraft have gained considerable fame, with some of them being hailed as classic movies. One of the earliest, and probably most iconic, examples of a con air airplane thriller is Airport (1970). The movie features a hapless and seemingly insane bomber whose plan is thwarted by the security forces and regular passengers at the airport. This movie has garnered numerous awards and remains widely referred to as the godfather of the con air airplane thriller genre.

The decade that followed the release of Airport (1970) saw some of the more well-known con air airplane thrillers such as Airport ’77 (1977), The Concorde: Airport ’79 (1979), and Airplane! (1980). While all of these movies relied on some aspect of air travel to create suspense, they also brought something unique and innovative to the genre. For instance, Airport ’77 (1977) introduced the idea of a dangerous hijacking attempt and the idea of keeping passengers safe in the event of an emergency. Likewise, The Concorde: Airport ’79 (1979) used advanced technology to create an action-packed and impressive picture of air travel. Finally, Airplane! (1980), of course, brought the genre to a much more comedic genre.

The history of the con air airplane thriller genre carried on through the 1980s and 1990s with some notable entries such as the Die Hard (1988) franchise and the Executive Decision (1996). In this era, the genre continued to incorporate advanced technology and special effects, while also exploring newer themes such as terrorism and espionage. In the early 2000s, the genre exploded with high-budget, slickly-produced thrillers such as Con Air (1997) and Air Force One (1997). These movies featured larger-than-life action and drama with impressive visual effects and star power, ushering in a new era of con air airplane thrillers.

Since then, the con air genre has continued to evolve and change with the times, incorporating newer technology and ideas in imaginative ways. For instance, Red Eye (2005) was a suspenseful thriller that took place entirely on a passenger airplane, while United 93 (2006) was a dramatized documentative that explored the 9/11 attacks from a different perspective. Likewise, the last few decades have seen a slew of mind-bending thrillers that explore the consequences of the increasingly digital age, such as Seat Acceptance (2020), Non Stop (2014), The Island (2005) and Snakes on a Plane (2006).

Thrillers That Use Con Air as an Element

As one of the oldest and most resilient genres out there, con air airplane thrillers have influenced other genres in order to create a wider range of stories. For instance, the science fiction genre has often used con air as a tool in order to explore a different set of ideas. This is best seen in the classic Jurassic Park (1993) franchise, which tells the story of a dangerous island infested with dinosaurs. The suspense is heightened by the presence of a middle-of-nowhere island, planes and helicopters. Likewise, World War Z (2013) uses an airborne virus in order to create tension and fear.

Action movies have also been known to take advantage of the thrill that con air provides. The Mission Impossible (1996) franchise is a prime example of this. This series has featured numerous thrilling scenes, set mostly on airplanes and other means of air travel, and has often explored the complexity of global espionage. Furthermore, the Fast and Furious (2001) franchise has often used air travel as a way to explore themes of loyalty, fraternity and courage. The last entry, F9 (2021), for example, features multiple scenes of heart-stopping aerial stunts.

Success Factors in Con Air Thrillers

Apart from the interesting storylines and visual components, there are several other key factors that have contributed to the success of con air airplane thrillers over the years. First and foremost, these movies usually have an impressive cast of characters. The protagonists, antagonists, and supporting characters in these movies often embody some sort of human experience, helping to draw the viewers into their personal journey. Furthermore, the audience can identify with the themes that are explored in these movies, such as the importance of security in air travel, the possibility of danger and the need to stay vigilant.

Another factor that contributes to the success of con air airplane thrillers is the suspense they create. Many of these movies feature scenes that are so intense and unpredictable that they keep the audience glued to their seats. This is enhanced by the use of advanced technology and special effects, which make the death-defying stunts seem all the more real.

Finally, con air airplane thrillers have succeeded because of the various themes they explore. From the seemingly never-ending battle of good versus evil to the idea of the importance of loyalty, these movies have something for everyone. Furthermore, these stories often include moral lessons which can be used to positively shape the world view of the viewers.

The Impact of Con Air on Popular Culture

The impact of con air airplane thrillers on popular culture has been profound. For instance, movies such as Mission Impossible (1996) and Air Force One (1997) have popularised the idea of heroic law enforcement and aided in promoting a sense of pride in the American public. Other movies, such as The Island (2005) and Snakes on a Plane (2006) have become modern cult classics, creating pop culture icons and inspiring spin-offs in different media.

The genre has also influenced the video games industry. In recent years, video games such as Turbulence (2006) and Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare (2014) have taken the con air genre to new heights, immersing the players in immersive stories and engaging them with exciting action.

Finally, con air airplane thrillers have been a great source of inspiration for authors as well. Novels such as The Terminal Man (1974) and Firebreak (1999) have explored further aspects related to the genre, creating thrilling stories and leaving a lasting impression on the readers.

The Future of Con Air Thrillers

The future of con air airplane thriller appears to be bright. With advanced technology and the ever-growing popularity of genres such as science-fiction and action, thrilling stories set in airplanes are here to stay. Furthermore, with the ever-changing landscapes of security protocols and terrorist threats, the con air genre will continue to evolve and explore new avenues as well.

In terms of cinematography, the genre is heading in a more visual direction. This is thanks to the advances in CGI and special effects, which will allow filmmakers to explore increasingly complex air sequences. Additionally, the popularity of streaming services will lead to more big-budget productions that focus on con air, as well as an increased opportunity for smaller, independent projects as well.

Finally, interactive components in movies have become increasingly popular in recent years, and the future is likely to bring more of these to the genre. Movies such as Snakes on a Plane (2006) already featured some interactive components, and more recently, Red Eye (2005) has been released in 4D, allowing viewers to experience the movie from a virtual reality perspective. It is only a matter of time before more con air airplane thriller movies are presented in this format.


The con air airplane thriller genre has evolved significantly over the years and is likely to continue to do so for many years to come. With the ever-growing popularity of action, science-fiction and other genres, one can expect the genre to remain relevant and exciting for the foreseeable future. Likewise, technological advances will allow filmmakers to explore increasingly complex air sequences and create thrilling stories that engage and excite their viewers.

Vicki Strouth is a life-long film enthusiast, having grown up watching classic cinema in her childhood. She has since gone on to pursue writing about films and movie news, with her work being published on various online platforms. She is passionate about supporting independent filmmakers and highlighting important stories from around the world. She has also written a successful book about classic movies from Hollywood's Golden Age era. Vicki currently lives in Seattle, where she continues to explore films of all genres and eras.

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