7.6/10
100,614
379 user 118 critic

Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987)

Trailer
1:26 | Trailer

Watch Now

From $2.99 (SD) on Amazon Video

ON DISC
A man must struggle to travel home for Thanksgiving with an obnoxious slob of a shower curtain ring salesman as his only companion.

Director:

Writer:

Reviews
Popularity
959 ( 497)
1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Uncle Buck (1989)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Bachelor and all round slob, Buck, babysits his brother's rebellious teenage daughter and her cute younger brother and sister.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: John Candy, Macaulay Culkin, Jean Louisa Kelly
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A Chicago man's hope for a peaceful family vacation in the woods is shattered when the annoying in-laws drop in.

Director: Howard Deutch
Stars: Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Stephanie Faracy
Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The Griswold family's cross-country drive to the Walley World theme park proves to be much more arduous than they ever anticipated.

Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Imogene Coca
Caddyshack (1980)
Comedy | Sport
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

An exclusive golf course has to deal with a brash new member and a destructive dancing gopher.

Director: Harold Ramis
Stars: Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield, Bill Murray
Comedy | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Three actors accept an invitation to a Mexican village to perform their onscreen bandit fighter roles, unaware that it is the real thing.

Director: John Landis
Stars: Steve Martin, Chevy Chase, Martin Short
Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

The Griswolds win a vacation tour across Europe where the usual havoc ensues.

Director: Amy Heckerling
Stars: Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Dana Hill
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A high school wise guy is determined to have a day off from school, despite what the Principal thinks of that.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara
Spies Like Us (1985)
Adventure | Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Two bumbling government employees think they are U.S. spies, only to discover that they are actually decoys for Nuclear War.

Director: John Landis
Stars: Chevy Chase, Dan Aykroyd, Steve Forrest
Weird Science (1985)
Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Two high school nerds attempt to create the perfect woman, but she turns out to be more than that.

Director: John Hughes
Stars: Anthony Michael Hall, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Kelly LeBrock
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The Griswold family's plans for a big family Christmas predictably turn into a big disaster.

Director: Jeremiah S. Chechik
Stars: Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo, Juliette Lewis
Animal House (1978)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

At a 1962 college, Dean Vernon Wormer is determined to expel the entire Delta Tau Chi Fraternity, but those troublemakers have other plans for him.

Director: John Landis
Stars: John Belushi, Karen Allen, Tom Hulce
Stripes (1981)
Comedy | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Two friends who are dissatisfied with their jobs decide to join the army for a bit of fun.

Director: Ivan Reitman
Stars: Bill Murray, John Candy, Harold Ramis
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
...
...
Joy
...
...
Peg
...
...
Doobie
...
Walt
...
Waitress (as Susan Kellerman)
...
...
...
Martin (as George O. Petrie)
Edit

Storyline

All that Neal Page wants to do is to get home for Thanksgiving. His flight has been cancelled due to bad weather, so he decides on other means of transport. As well as bad luck, Neal is blessed with the presence of Del Griffith, shower curtain ring salesman and all-around blabbermouth who is never short of advice, conversation, bad jokes, or company. And when he decides that he is going the same direction as Neal.... Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Steve Martin had no reason to panic...until John Candy came along. See more »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

25 November 1987 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Planes, Trains and Automobiles  »

Edit

Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$7,009,482, 29 November 1987, Wide Release

Gross USA:

$49,530,280
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

According to Editor Paul Hirsch, the original cut of this movie was three hours and forty minutes long. He and John Hughes edited it down to two hours. This version was test screened, and it was probably used to edit trailers for the film, which is why they show a lot of deleted scenes. The movie was then edited again down to one hour and thirty-three minutes for theatrical release. According to Hirsch, a two hour version still exists, but he doesn't know where it is. See more »

Goofs

When Neal is walking from the parking lot (where his rented car should be) to the main terminal, a brief clipping indicates that the sun is going down. However, when Neal is at the terminal, it appears to be mid-afternoon. See more »

Quotes

Neal: Let me close this conversation by saying that you are one unique individual.
Del: Unique... what's that, Latin for "asshole"?
See more »

Crazy Credits

After all the end credits, we get to see advertising exec William Windom in the office as in the scene in the beginning of the movie, still examining the pictures Neal Page were waiting for him to get through with at that point. See more »


Soundtracks

Mess Around
(1953)
Written by Ahmet Ertegun
Performed by Ray Charles
Produced by Ahmet Ertegun & Jerry Wexler
Courtesy of Atlantic Recording Corp., a division of Warner Special Products
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Arguably the best comedy of the 1980s
2 June 2004 | by See all my reviews

The greatness and pure genius of "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" is that, while it is uproariously hilarious, it also reveals great hurt and truth - unlike any comedy I have ever seen before or since.

Scenes such as those in the Bravewood Inn are classics. The argument between Neal and Del is the turning point in the film, and it is the first time that the audience realizes that they are in for more than they thought they were. There are certain elements of tenderness, heart, agony, conflict, and heartfelt emotion in "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" that make it transcend the genre.

Steve Martin and John Candy don't just act; they embody themselves so deeply in their characters that it almost sets a standard for how comedic pairings should be. Line them up next to Chris Farley and David Spade and the differences are astronomical. Watching Steve Martin is like acting a comedian at the top of his game. Just watch his reactions. The facial reaction from Steve in response to Del's comeback in the Bravewood Inn is perfect; we understand what Neal is going through, and Steve Martin lets us know this by placing himself in a recognizable area. We also understand Del, and that is really the key to this movie: Being able to identify with both characters almost equally. How often can you say that about buddy pictures? I don't ever feel much sympathy for Chris Farley, if that means anything.

John Candy remains one of the most underrated and underwritten film comedians of all time. Offered constant mediocre scripts during the eighties and early nineties, all the way up until his death in 1994, he could make the material something more, something watchable. I recently viewed "Funny Farm," a painfully unfunny film to sit through. I imagined what John Candy could have done with Chevy Chase's role, and I found myself laughing. Why? Because John Candy can make anything watchable. Just how many times would you watch "Summer Rental" or "The Great Outdoors" if the lead actor was Jim Carrey?

There's some important content in this film, but it is never overpowered by laughs, nor vice versa. They go hand-in-hand. I come back to the Bravewood Inn argument scene. After the hilarious, ongoing insults Neal throws at Del, Del responds and says, "You wanna hurt me? Go right ahead if it makes you feel any better. I'm an easy target. Yeah, you're right, I talk too much. But I also listen too much. I could be a cold-hearted cynical like you, but I don't like to hurt people's feelings. So you go right on and think what you like about me. But I'm not changing. I - I like me. My wife likes me. My customers like me. 'Cause I'm the real deal. Whatcha see is whatcha get." It's creepy how much dramatic, emotional and truthful subtext sneaks into this film, and yet it only makes it all the better for it. "Planes, Trains and Automobiles" is my favorite Comedy, yes I know that I have said it before. But, it is a serious comedy that has both heart and is hilarious at the same time. Entertainment at it's best. And isn't that what movies are all about?

5/5 stars.


138 of 164 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?
Review this title | See all 379 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Best of 2017: Our Favorite Movie and TV Stills

Take a look at our favorite movie and TV stills from the past year. Spot any of your faves?

Browse the Best of 2017