The 50 most hilarious Airplane! movie quotes (with loads of screenshots)

airplane movie quotes

How can I even call myself a legitimate airline and aviation blogger if I don’t have a post about Airplane! movie quotes? I mean, shouldn’t I have scratched that off my list back when I first started? Oh well. It may have taken me a few years, but here we go with an entire post about all the best quotes from the movie “Airplane!

For the extreme few of you who have no idea what I’m talking about, the quotes in this article are pertaining to the 1980 Paramount Pictures film named “Airplane!

Not only was it one of the stupidest movies ever created, it was also one of the most brilliant. It quickly and easily reached cult status in the airline and aviation community, and it’s on its way to being one of the greatest films of all time. I am serious. But don’t call me Shirley…

The plot

Airplane! was an unusual movie in the sense that there wasn’t a very defined plot with a clear set of main characters. Yes, Ted Striker (Robert Hays) and Elaine Dickinson (Julie Hagerty) are arguably the two most important characters in this film. However, there were so many others that stood out as being vital to the overall flow of the movie.

airplane movie are you a doctor quote

It was a bit of a disorganized mess, but that’s what made it brilliant. That being said, I’ll try to break down the plot as simply as I can:

  • The movie starts by introducing the audience to a wide variety of characters who are preparing for a flight from Los Angeles to Chicago.
  • The flight will be operated by a Trans American Airlines Boeing 707 (which hilariously sounded like a piston-driven aircraft).
  • The story gains momentum as a lovestruck / down on his luck war veteran named Ted Striker reluctantly follows his ex-girlfriend / flight attendant onto the flight in a last ditch effort to win her back. He is massively afraid of flying, by the way.
  • During the course of the flight, a meal is served. Steak and fish were the options. It turns out that the fish was bad and anyone who ate it became violently ill. Guess what the entire flight crew ate?
  • Striker’s fear of flying was stemmed from traumatic war experiences. He was a pilot who was shot down in the war (they never really specified which war), and suddenly – he was the only passenger on board capable of landing that plane.
  • Striker then goes on to work through his personal demons about flying, and finally works up the courage to land the plane.

I know. It sounds like a really serious and heavy movie, but all of the shenanigans that were going on between the other characters in this movie made it absolutely brilliant.

All of the best Airplane! movie quotes – including some that you have probably even forgotten about

Normally when I do movie quote posts, I like to organize everything into sections. For example, my recent post of Top Gun quotes was very easy to compartmentalize. Breaking everything down into individual sections was a nice way to digest the best parts of that movie, and it ended up being a fun read.

And I said earlier, this film is a little different. Since the movie flows together so seamlessly, I’m going to organize all of these Airplane! movie quotes in a linear fashion which follows the timeline of the actual film.

Airplane white zone movie quote
Announcement guy: The red zone is for immediate loading and unloading of passengers only. There is no stopping in the white zone.
Airplane red zone white zone movie quote
Announcement lady: No, the white is for loading and unloading, and there is no stopping in the red zone.
Airplane no stopping in white zone movie quote
Announcement guy: The red zone has always been for loading and unloading. There’s never stopping in a white zone!
Airplane don’t tell me which zone is for stopping movie quote
Announcement lady: Don’t tell me which zone is for stopping and which zone is for loading!
Airplane white zone shit movie quote
Announcement guy: Listen buddy – don’t start up with your white zone shit again!
Airplane Elaine quote
Elaine: And I can’t live with a man I don’t respect!
Airplane what a pisser movie quote
Striker: What a pisser.
Airplane courtesy phone quote
PA announcement: Captain Oveur, white courtesy phone. Captain Clarence Oveur, white courtesy phone. Captain Oveur: [picks up red phone] Operator: No. The white phone. Captain Oveur: Oh.
Airplane give me Ham on 5, hold the Mayo quote
Operator: Excuse me, this is the operator Captain Oveur, I have an emergency call for you on line 5 from a Mr. Ham. Captain Oveur: Alright, give me Ham on 5, hold the Mayo.
Airplane jive guy movie quote
Jive guy: Hey, you know what they say – see a broad to get dat booty yak ‘em. Other Jive guy: Leg ‘er down and smack ‘em yak ‘em!
Airplane what’s our vector Victor movie quote
ATC: flight 2-0-niner you’re cleared for takeoff. Captain Oveur: Roger! Roger: Eh? ATC: LA departure frequency 1-2-3 point niner. Captain Oveur: Roger! Roger: Huh? Victor: Request vector, over. Captain Oveur: What? ATC: Flight 2-0-niner cleared for vector 3-2-4. Roger: We have clearance, Clarence. Captain Oveur: Roger, Roger, what’s our vector, Victor? ATC: Tower radio clearance, over. Captain Oveur: That’s “Clarence Oveur”, over. ATC: Roger! Roger: Huh? ATC: Roger, over. Roger: Huh?! Captain Oveur: Who?!
Airplane little boy coffee movie quote
Little boy: Cream?
Airplane I take it black movie quote
Little girl: No thank you. I take it black. Like my men.
Airplane you ever seen a grown man naked movie quote
Captain Oveur: You ever seen a grown man naked?
Airplane second cup of coffee movie quote
Wife: Jim never has a second cup of coffee at home…
Airplane Turkish prison movie quote
Captain Oveur: Joey; have you ever been in a Turkish prison?
Airplane Ronald Reagan film quote
Sick lady: It’s my stomach. I haven’t felt this awful since we saw that Ronald Reagan film!
Airplane Jim never vomits at home movie quote
Wife: Jim never vomits at home…
Airplane it’s a big building with patients movie quote
Elaine: A hospital? What is it? Doctor: It’s a big building with patients. But that’s not important right now.
Airplane how soon can you land movie quote
Doctor: Captain, how soon can you land? Captain Oveur: I can’t tell. Doctor: You can tell me. I’m a doctor. Captain Oveur: No, I mean I’m just not sure. Doctor: Can’t you take a guess? Captain Oveur: Well, not for another two hours. Doctor: You can’t take a guess for another two hours? Captain Oveur: Nono, I mean we can’t land for another two hours.
Airplane what was it we had for dinner movie quote
Doctor: What was it we had for dinner tonight?
Airplane steak or fish movie quote
Elaine: Well, we had a choice. Steak or fish.
Airplane I had lasagna movie quote
Doctor: Yes, yes I remember I had lasagna.
Airplane uncontrollable flatulence movie quote
Elaine: Just how serious is it Doctor? Doctor: Extremely serious. It starts with a slight fever and dryness of the throat. As the virus penetrates the red blood cells, the victim becomes dizzy. He begins experiencing an itching…a rash…from there the poison goes to work on the central nervous system causing severe muscle spasms. Followed by the inevitable drooling. At this point the entire digestive system collapses, accompanied by uncontrollable flatulence. Until finally the poor bastard is reduced to a quivering wasted piece of jelly.
Airplane what the hell is going on up there movie quote
Doctor: What the hell is going on up there?!
Airplane there is no reason to become alarmed movie quote
Elaine (speaking on the PA): There is no reason to become alarmed, and we hope you enjoy the rest of your flight.
Airplane is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane movie quote
Elaine: By the way – is there anyone on board who knows how to fly a plane?
Airplane can you fly this plane movie quote
Doctor: Can you fly this plane and land it?
Airplane surely you can’t be serious movie quote
Striker: Surely you can’t be serious.
Airplane I am serious and don’t call me Shirley movie quote
Doctor: I am serious. And don’t call me Shirley.
Airplane stop calling me Shirley movie quote
Striker: Surely there must be something you can do. Doctor: I’m doing everything I can. And stop calling me Shirley!
Airplane they’re on instruments movie quote
Steve: They could be miles off course! Rex: That’s impossible. They’re on instruments!
Airplane Leon’s getting larger movie quote
ATC guy: Bad news: the fog is getting thicker. Johnny: And Leon’s getting laarrrger!
Airplane maybe we outta turn on the search lights movie quote
ATC guy: Captain, maybe we outta turn on the search lights now. Rex: No. That’s just what they’ll be expecting us to do.
Airplane disco lives forever movie quote
Radio guy: WZAZ in Chicago, where disco lives foreeveeerrr!
Airplane just want to tell you both good luck movie quote
Doctor: Just want to tell you both good luck. We’re all counting on you.
Airplane sniffing glue quote
Steve: Sure is quiet out there. Rex: Yeah, too quiet. Steve: Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue!
Airplane what an asshole quote
Radar guy: He’s all over the place! 900 feet up to 1300 feet…what an asshole!

Airplane just kidding quote
Johnny [unplugs the runway lights]: Just kidding!
Airplane we’re all counting on you quote
Doctor [as the plane is bouncing on the runway]: Just want to tell you both good luck. We’re all counting on you.

Airplane now arriving at gate 8 movie quote
Announcer lady: Flight 209 now arriving at gate 8. Gate 9. Gate 10…Gate 13…gate 14….gate 15…gate 23….24…25…

Airplane movie doctor quote
Doctor [after the plane has landed]: Just want to tell you both good luck. We’re all counting on you.
Something else that’s notable about Airplane! is that many of the jokes were visual instead of spoken. I could probably make an entire post of just hilarious facial expressions and mannerisms from this movie. It’s that good.

How I use quotes from the movie Airplane! in my daily life

I’m starting to learn something about myself as I do more of these movie quote posts. You see, back when I wrote my Planes, Trains, and Automobiles quotes article earlier this year, I included a section which laid out all the ways that I use those quotes in my daily life. I then did it with my recent post about Top Gun. And now, it would be foolish of me to not do it again since this has been such a quotable movie for me.

After all, Airplane! was the first aviation movie that I ever saw in my life. It came at a time where I wasn’t even into airplanes yet, but it has such a profound impact on me that I have been rattling off quotes from this movie ever since. Like, pretty much nonstop.

Here’s how I’m using those quotes in my daily life:

  • Every time someone tells me they’re going to Turkey: “You ever been in a Turkish prison?”
  • Every time I very ungracefully complete a massively complicated task: “ I just want to tell you both good luck. We’re all counting on you.”
  • Every time I walk into an airport and I hear the red zone / white zone message: “Don’t start with that ‘white zone’ shit again!“
  • Every time I’m typing an address into Google maps: “Roger Roger. What’s my vector, Victor?”
  • Whenever something doesn’t go as expected: “What a pisser.”

Was Airplane! the movie that was responsible for getting me into aircraft?

That’s a fantastically good question. I first saw this movie as a very young boy in the in the 1980s, and I don’t recall ever getting excited about airplanes after those first few viewings. It wasn’t until I actually started drawing stuff that I found that I liked drawing airplanes (and cars).

Even then, when I did start first drawing airplanes, it was military and space aircraft. To be honest, I don’t think it was this movie that got me into commercial aviation.

That being said, this movie still had a massive influence on me. The overall corniness of it no doubt rubbed off on me a bit, and I’m even starting to question if it had a significant impact on the quirky sense of humor that I have today. I mean, the humor in this movie is exactly the kind of humor I apply to most situations in life.

Thinking back on it, I would likely will be a very different person today if I hadn’t seen that movie at such a young age. Whether or not I’d be a better person is the question. The only thing that I know for absolute certainty is that I would be a much more bland person for sure…

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