aviation films

As every week, we present the best topics related to aviation. Today the EAS Barcelona team has been making a ranking of the best aviation films that from our professional criteria we consider to be the best aviation films shot. We had to spend a weekend hooked on the TV watching one movie after another to make this TOP 7 of the best aviation movies.

The Flight Denzel Washington

Top 7 best aviation films

We’ve probably left a few films in the inkwell… but by popular vote this was the main lineup. If you think we should include or remove any of them, leave a comment at the end of the post. If you like the history of aviation you might also want to know more about the history of the Boieng.

WINGS (1927)

This silent film opened the skies for airplane films and took the first Academy Award for Best Film. For a long time it was thought that the film was lost forever, until in 1992 a copy reappeared in Paris which has been restored and preserved for the future. The plot tells the story of two former friends – now enemies – pilots in the First World War, in the middle of a love triangle and with a tragedy in the making. In Wings we can see Thomas-Morse MB-3s, SPADs and Curtis P-1 Hawk planes. It is fascinating to see Wings, a feature film that would become the catalyst for the aviation films that would follow.


James Stewart plays the great Charles Lindbergh in this film. Charles in 1927 became the first pilot to cross the Atlantic Ocean from west to east, linking the American and European continents in a non-stop solo flight from New York City to Paris. The film tells how Lindbergh meticulously prepared this epic flight, narrating his determination and skill in an impressive epic in which Lindbergh had to fight against mechanical problems of all kinds, and navigate with the only help of the stars. In the film you can also admire various models of airplanes of the time. The original title of the film, “Spirit of St Louis”, is named after the plane with which Charles Lindbergh achieved this feat.

TOP GUN (1986)

Without a doubt, one of the most famous films about military aviation, which this June begins its flight with its second part, is TOP GUN: Maverick. The world’s fastest planes, aerial acrobatics and Top Gun action scenes continue to receive acclaim today. Tom Cruise is the star of this cult classic about how the Top Gun Fighter School works, in a plot with love and rivalry. The film has excellent aviation scenes that allow us to see military planes like the Northrop F-5E or the F-14 Tomcat in action.

The Aviator (2004)

Enormously entertaining and directed by Martin Scorsese, one of the great film directors of our time. The film is a brilliant biography of the multifaceted Howard Hughes (Leonardo di Caprio) who became one of the most outstanding producers of American cinema during the 1930s and 1940s. But Hughes, besides being a producer, was a great visionary of the aviation industry. His innovations in the world of aviation have ensured the safety of modern aviation and the development of today’s engineering.

Amelia (2009)

If there is a woman to stand out in the history of aviation, it is Amelia Earhart, a pioneer in flying solo across the Atlantic and many other records. She proved that being a woman was not an impediment to flying, breaking the rule that pilots had to be men. The film reviews her life and her records, as well as her disappearance into the Pacific Ocean on July 2, 1937, when she intended to complete the round-the-world flight.

The flight / Flight (2012). Full movie

This film takes place on a flight from Orlando operated by SouthJet to Atlanta, where fortunately it manages to successfully escape a catastrophe apparently caused by a breakdown.  The CPT on a reverse flight (an absolutely implausible manoeuvre, but that’s the way the cinema is), saves 96 of 102 people on board after a crash landing in a field near a church. The flight’s commander, Whip Whitaker (Denzel Washington), who flew the plane, is considered a national hero. However, when the investigation to determine the cause of the breakdown is launched, it is found that the captain had excess alcohol in his blood.

Sully (2016)

Sully is a film directed by Clint Eastwood and masterfully played by Tom Hanks as Sullenberger. The film tells the true story of Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger. A pilot who became a hero by making an emergency splashdown in the Hudson River at its mouth in New York City on January 15, 2009. The plane after a multiple bird strike in which he lost both engines, saving the lives of 155 passengers plus crew, and possible victims of a plane crash over the city. By far, one of the most recommended films on aeronautics due to the neat technical rigor with which it deals with the different aspects of air accident investigation.


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