15 Movies and Shows to Watch if You Love Aviation

15 Movies and Shows to Watch if You Love Aviation

We miss traveling, don’t you? Whether you’re a flight attendant like us or someone who lives for the joys (and woes) of air travel, you probably miss exploring the world pre-pandemic. While some folks are out flying, many of us are still stuck at home dreaming of our next big trip.

Like you, we’ve had a lot of free time over the last year so we caught up on some of our favorite movies and TV shows and compiled a list of 15 titles that you should watch if you miss being on an airplane. We have to warn you, though, some of these titles won’t exactly make you excited to get on a plane again – but – they’re fantastic nonetheless and aviation-themed, so we had to include them! Let’s just hope that none of our flights are ever quite as eventful as the ones listed below.

Grab some popcorn, avoid your responsibilities, and start binge-watching.

Did we skip one? Tell us in the comments!


Light-Hearted Comedies

AIRPLANE (1980)
Starring: Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Leslie Nielsen
Rating: 7.7/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: No good list of aviation-themed entertainment would be complete without Airplane. This film is an absolute classic and provides some pretty epic laughs.

VIEW FROM THE TOP (2003)
Starring: Gwyneth Paltrow, Christina Applegate, Mark Ruffalo, Candice Bergen, Rob Lowe, Mike Myers, Kelly Preston
Rating: 5.3/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: It’s the story of a small-town girl who dreams of becoming a flight attendant. Didn’t we all have that dream at some point? This is a pretty standard rom-com overall but it still remains a cult favorite among flight attendants. If you find the flight attendant life even remotely fascinating, you’ll probably get a kick out of this. Plus, who cares if Gwyneth Paltrow says she regrets doing this movie? We still love it.

Action-Packed Thrillers

RED EYE (2005)
Starring:
Rachel McAdams, Cillian Murphy
Rating: 6.4/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: This is not your typical Wes Craven film, but Red Eye is a fun and clever thriller that keeps you entertained. Plus, the cast is great! We feel like Rachel McAdams can do no wrong.

FLIGHTPLAN (2005)
Starring: Jodie Foster, Peter Sarsgaard
Rating: 6.3/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: Jodie Foster is fantastic in this psychological thriller about a woman who loses her daughter on a long flight. The plot is a little far-fetched, but the action makes it a fun watch!

Critically-Acclaimed

SULLY (2016)
Starring: Tom Hanks, Aaron Eckhart, Laura Linney
Rating: 7.4/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: This is a fantastic movie about “The Miracle on the Hudson,” one of the most incredible incidents in aviation history. Tom Hanks does a stellar job portraying Sully. Our one and only issue with this film is that we wish the flight attendants had been portrayed a bit more realistically. We know the movie is titled Sully, but someone had to help get those people out.

CATCH ME IF YOU CAN (2002)
Starring:
Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Christopher Walken
Rating: 8.1 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: It’s everything we love about life in aviation – minus the whole crime thing, of course! This film is full of fun, adventure, and a little bit of drama. Plus, it includes homage to Pan Am, and who doesn’t love reminiscing about the golden age of air travel?

Feel-Good Films

UP IN THE AIR (2009)
Starring:
George Clooney, Vera Farmiga, Anna Kendrick
Rating: 7.4/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: This story focuses more on the downsides of constantly being on the go, and yet still somehow gives us that warm fuzzy feeling about things like airport security. Weird, right? Our favorite George Clooney quote from the movie sums it up: “All the things you probably hate about traveling – the recycled air, the artificial lighting, the digital juice dispensers, the cheap sushi – are warm reminders that I’m home.”



THE TERMINAL (2004)
Starring:
Tom Hanks, Catherine Zeta-Jones
Rating: 7.4/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: If you’ve ever sat reserve at the airport, then this movie will probably give you a little bit of PTSD more than anything else. This film made us feel grateful for the fact that we don’t actually live at the airport – despite the fact that we feel like we do. Also, should Tom Hanks be in every aviation-themed movie? Let’s discuss.

Not for the Faint-of-Heart

FLIGHT (2012)
Starring: Denzel Washington, Nadine Velazquez, Don Cheadle
Rating: 7.3/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: If you’re a nervous flyer, you might want to sit this one out. While the scenario is far-fetched, it is still highly entertaining and Denzel Washington is amazing as always.

NON-STOP (2014)
Starring:
Liam Neeson, Julianne Moore, Michelle Dockery
Rating: 6.9/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: As you’re most likely already aware, hijackings are pretty unlikely at 35,000 feet – but they’re still possible! While the everyday traveler may not enjoy a movie like this as much as a flight attendant will, movies like this remind us why we spend so much time on safety and security during flight attendant training. It’s why flight attendants have to stay vigilant on every flight – even the seemingly boring ones. Plus, we love seeing Michelle Dockery and Lupita Nyong’o as flight attendants!

Heroic Tales

NEERJA (2016)
Starring: Sonam KapoorShabana AzmiYogendra Tiku 
Rating: 7.7/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: If you are a flight attendant and have not seen this, stop what you’re doing right now and go watch it. Neerja Bhanot is a true hero and this powerful movie does a fantastic job of telling her story. Whether you’re in the aviation industry or not, this is a must-see film.

7500 (2019)
Starring:
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Rating: 6.3/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: We’ll start by saying that this movie is heavy. The film happens in real-time and it is intense. To be honest, we couldn’t wait for this film to end but also could not stop watching. Joseph Gordon-Levitt delivers an incredible performance.

Binge-Worthy TV Shows

PAN AM (2011-2012)
Starring:
Christina Ricci, Margot Robbie
Rating: 7.10/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: This extremely underrated show has an all-star cast and is full of excitement and drama. With all that being said, it was the nostalgia of it all that sucked us into the show. Doesn’t everyone want white linen tablecloths in First Class and a week-long Europe trip?

THE FLIGHT ATTENDANT (2020)
Starring:
Kaley Cuoco, Michiel Huisman, Zosia Mamet
Rating: 7.1/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: Many of our fellow flight attendant friends don’t seem to like the show because they felt Cassie was a hot mess… to which we say: you know you’ve flown with this person! Maybe the people we fly with aren’t quite as disastrous as Cassie, but they definitely bring their fair share of issues to the galley. This is a fun whodunnit comedy/drama and we can’t wait for Season 2!

Bonus Flick:

Bridesmaids Movie Poster

BRIDESMAIDS (2011)
Starring: Kristin Wiig, Maya Rudolph, Rose Byrne, Melissa McCarthy
Rating: 6.8/10 Stars on iMDB
Our Take: Ok, so this isn’t exactly an aviation-themed movie by any means, but it is an overall hilarious (albeit awkward) comedy that happens to include one of the funniest airplane scenes of all time. If you haven’t seen the movie, you should watch it just for that scene alone. This all-star cast really leaves an impression. We promise you won’t be disappointed!

Tell us your favorites!

If we skipped any aviation-themed shows or movies that you absolutely love, let us know in the comments below!

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Flying Above The Stereotypes

Flying Above The Stereotypes

I was recently interviewed by someone who asked, “Why are so many male flight attendants gay?” While I understand the significance of stereotypes, they’re often more harmful than they are helpful, so I felt that the question warranted a thoughtful response. The short answer is, being a flight attendant is the best job out there and gay men are obviously the most intelligent people on the planet. I’m mostly kidding, but all jokes aside, the job lends to a lifestyle that is both fun and glamorous. (Most days, anyway!) Flight attendants get to travel all over the world and get paid for it, jet off to different countries at the drop of a hat, and avoid those awkward holiday dinner conversations with family by blaming our absence on work. What’s not to love?

For gay men, being a flight attendant is all about identity – or rather, anonymity in this case. Imagine a flight that you’ve been on. Do you remember your flight attendant’s name? Rarely. Do you know anything about this person other than they seem to have fun at work? Nope. But you will always remember how your flight attendant made you feel. As crew members, we love putting on a show for the public, entertaining our guests, and then going on with our lives at the end of the day. We love to perform, and the airplane provides a perfect stage to express ourselves. We can transform into a character we might not otherwise get to play and sometimes our uniform even becomes a costume that can make us feel safe and protected. We are allowed to be unapologetically true to who we are with no threat of pushback from potentially unaccepting friends or family. Everybody adores a fun-loving flight attendant because it makes traveling more fun. But while often times even the most conservative person loves a sassy gay flight attendant, it’s still not necessarily the person they want their child bringing home to dinner. In the aviation world we are accepted for whatever bold personality we want to adopt. On the airplane, we are free to be whoever we want to be.



The flight attendant lifestyle has remained so appealing for gay men over the years because like gay men, flight attendants come from all walks of life and face similar issues of self-identity. Through all of the diverse cultures we get to experience every day at work, we realize a new piece of ourselves in each one, learning more and more about who we want to become. Rather than learning new ways to hide from our truth, we uncover new aspects of ourselves that we never knew were there before. Individually we may be quite different from one another, but we all have so much in common at our core. There’s an unspoken bond and mutual respect among flight attendants much like members of the LGBTQ+ community. That respect translates well into the flight attendant life because crew members around the world are united by the wings that each of us wear proudly when we fly. We have experienced a lot of the same situations and understand each other as a result. Each trip we fly with new crew members and are required to communicate effectively with them without ever having met before. We have to be able to form strong connections with sheer strangers. This allows us to create a space where everyone feels free to open up… sometimes maybe even too much! At the end of the day, flight attendants around the globe look out for each other, just as members of the gay community often do, too.

With the flight attendant lifestyle, the possibilities are endless. The job is flexible, relatively low-stress, and allows us to see places and meet people that we would’ve otherwise never imagined possible. Being a flight attendant allows a level of freedom to be exactly who you want to be, which often times we don’t get the privilege of doing while growing up gay. Whether you fly with your best friends or perfect strangers, you can open up and embrace your truth. So when someone asks why gay men become flight attendants, it’s because you can be anybody you want to be, but most importantly, you can just be yourself.

Let us know your thoughts in the comments!



And now, some wisdom from Nicole Byer:

You’re right, Nicole. We are too much for this world. We belong in the sky!


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Catch Flights, Not Feelings

Catch Flights, Not Feelings

Romantic comedies make dating look alarmingly magical. A few perfect dates in and it’s time to get married, but that’s not realistic, is it? We know what you’re thinking, aren’t these ‘Two Guys’ married? Well, yes, we are – but we owe it all to being happily single! Every time people say to us “I wish I had what you two have” – we both smile. We smile because of all the experiences you could have in life, it’s completely okay to put romantic relationships on the back burner. First and foremost, it’s so important to be in a committed relationship with yourself, because chances are there’s a better version of you that you’re working towards. Spend time with that human and love them unconditionally before allowing someone else to be a part of your life. As cliché as it may be, RuPaul said it best: “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell you gonna love somebody else?” Put you first, and then you’ll suddenly find space to allow someone else into your little world. Then, conveniently, that person will somehow find themselves drawn to you… trust us. It’s a whole universe thing. You’ll see.

My husband and I are each other’s person through and through, but we also know how crucial it is to just be true to yourself and still maintain your own identity, especially when in a relationship. Long before we knew each other, we both spent many years of our lives losing ourselves while being involved in toxic relationships. When we first met, neither one of us wanted anything to do with commitment, oddly enough, and yet that’s when it came to us in the absolute best way. It was so unintentional and carefree that it was honest, and it was blunt. By the time we both caught on to the fact that we had feelings for each other, they were much deeper than either of us realized. Sure, we were dating, but neither of us had any expectations or put any pressure on ourselves. The beginning of our relationship was organic because neither of us were trying too hard or worrying about messing things up. We were both putting in the same level of energy, and it’s because neither of us were “looking” that we got exactly what we were looking for.



So now back to you, how does that translate? It’s actually pretty easy. Sit down, figure out what you want for yourself, and go live your best life! Be afraid of absolutely nothing – except maybe spiders. That’s a valid fear. Burn your house down and move. Otherwise, take risks, travel to new places, and try new things. The worst thing that could happen is you realize that you simply don’t like whatever it is you’ve tried doing. You’ll be much happier with yourself for doing it anyway before you find yourself trapped in a relationship having no idea who you are at the core. Don’t let age get in the way of this journey, either. Don’t say you’re either too old or too young for something, because it’s simply not true. Don’t compare yourself to people around you and what they have, because their journey is exactly that – their journey.

Sometimes, the best travel companion is you! Go see places by yourself. And don’t tell yourself you can’t afford it, either. Pack a backpack, some peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, and go stay in a hostel for a couple of nights somewhere. If you want to make it work, you will. This isn’t the time for excuses. You don’t have to go to Indonesia for three months alone, start smaller than that. Go to dinner or a movie, spend time dating yourself first, and getting to know who you are. Take a little road trip or weekend getaway, or even just a day to pamper yourself. You don’t necessarily have to “Eat. Pray. Love.” it – just hang out with you because you’re awesome! You’ll be surprised by how much there is to learn about yourself.

Now, we’re not advocating for the single life forever, but just learn to be independent, so when you find your person, you can continue that journey along and be authentically you. If your person is out of town, go out and have fun! If they’re not okay with you living your life to the fullest, you’re with the wrong person and you need to run anyway! Maybe you don’t want to go out without them, that’s okay, too. You’re not looking for someone who completes you, you’re looking for someone who complements you. Your significant other should be someone who adds value to your life. That’s right, we’re Marie Kondo-ing it. Does this person spark joy? No? Get rid of them. Life is too short to be anything but happy.

So as we enter coupling season, do yourselves a favor – catch flights, not feelings! Don’t go chasing someone simply to have a relationship because you’ll end up annoyed or heartbroken, or both. Take the adventure you’ve always dreamt about. You’ll get to a point where you are finally happy with yourself and where you are in life. You’ll be grateful for what you have and yet at the same time, grateful for what you don’t have. And sometimes, when you least expect it, someone will walk into your life and add value to your journey. You never know where your life will take you. Say hi to your seat mate on your next flight, they could be the one! Or, they could be a weirdo. Feel it out. Trust your gut. But sometimes you get lucky.


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