In 1987, Steve Martin and John Candy (two of the funniest actors ever) teamed up with filmmaker John Hughes in the hilarious Thanksgiving comedy classic, “Planes, Trains & Automobiles.”
In the Paramount Pictures presentation of ‘Planes, Trains & Automobiles,’ easily excitable Neal Page is somewhat of a control freak. Trying to get home to Chicago to spend Thanksgiving with his wife and kids, his flight is rerouted to a distant city in Kansas due to a huge snowstorm, and his sanity begins to fray.
Worse yet, he is forced to bunk up with talkative Del Griffith, whom he finds extremely annoying. Together they must overcome the insanity of holiday travel to reach their intended destination.
This 1987 modern holiday classic is one of the funniest (and sometimes touching) comedies ever released throughout the last few decades. In fact, every Thanksgiving I watch this movie! There are many moments that are extremely hilarious and the laughs just keep on coming. There are also a few moments that can be a little dramatic, which mainly involves John Candy’s character.
Martin and Candy worked really well together in this movie and their comedic timing is simply perfect. There are many scenes that really stand-out, and, of course, the infamous ‘car rental tirade’ scene has to be mentioned. This scene will always make everyone crack up and just seeing Martin flip out is just pure comedy. Filled with lots of great humor, some silly fun, and a bit of emotion, ‘Planes, Trains & Automobiles’ is a comedy gem that is a can’t miss.
The cast: Steve Martin as Neal Page, John Candy as Del Griffith, Laila Robbins as Susan Page, Dylan Baker as Owen, Larry Hankin as Doobie, Matthew Lawrence as Little Neal, and a few cameos from John Hughes regulars Michael McKean (State Trooper), Kevin Bacon (Taxi Racer), Edie McClurg (Car Rental Agent), and Ben Stein (Wichita Airport Rep.).
‘Planes, Trains & Automobiles’ is written and directed by John Hughes, who marks this as the first film he’s directed that’s not involved with the teen genre.
Actor Martin was convinced to join the production after favoring two scenes he had read from the script — the seat-adjustment scene and his character’s ‘little’ tirade at the car rental desk. Hughes originally wanted Tom Hanks for the Neal Page role and John Travolta for the Del Griffith role.
No transportation company wanted to appear or be involved in the movie, so crews had to rent 20 miles of train track and refurbish old railroad cars, construct a set that looked like an airline terminal, and rent 250 cars for the infamous Rent-a-Car sequence.
The holiday comedy was filmed in 85 days, mainly in the New York and Chicago areas, and various other locations.
A remake of ‘Planes, Trains & Automobiles’ is in the early stages of development with Will Smith and Kevin Hart in the lead roles.
The comedy was initially released on Nov. 25, 1987. It earned $49.5 million domestically and has become a holiday favorite over the years.
The Martin/Candy comedy is rated R and has a running time of 93 minutes.