And now for your in-flight viewing pleasure, watch a movie likely to make you start squirming and possibly screaming in your cramped seat.
Movies like "Up in the Air," which is a sophisticated look at the life of a million-mile-club executive, and "Bridesmaids," which has one of the funniest plane sequences ever on the big screen, are passenger-approved. But there's nothing like an airline disaster movie to freak out even the mellowest of frequent fliers. As we wait for our "Flight," here are nine movies that should probably be saved for when you're firmly on land.
To quote its gushing review of Robert Zemeckis' first live-action film in 12 years, the Hollywood Reporter describes the movie's pivotal flight sequence (in which Denzel Washington's hungover pilot successfully orchestrates an emergency landing) as a "gripping 20-minute interlude" that will "mesmerize and terrify audiences in a manner that will make the film widely talked about, a must-see for many and perhaps a must-avoid for a few." On top of that must-avoid list is anyone with flying anxiety in general and who is on a flight in particular.
'The Dark Knight Rises' (2012)
It might be one of the Greatest Movies of All Time, but that opening sequence with the two planes? It's scary enough to keep you land-bound for life. The death-defying aerial stunt follows a small CIA plane followed by a huge cargo plane with Bane and his terrorists. The idea of hit men on another plane managing to get on yours, killing everyone but the person they're kidnapping and then plunging your aircraft to the ground is not exactly what you want to think about when you're 30,000 feet above ground.
'United 93' (2006)
Paul Greengrass' ultra-realistic depiction of the doomed flight that crashed into in Pennsylvania field on September 11, 2001 still manages to impart the terror and despair of that day — along with the heart-stopping moments of heroism by passengers who fought back against their hijackers and kept the plane from destroying the U.S. Capitol. It's a gripping, emotional movie that makes you proud to be an American, but, like all 9-11-themed films, one that should never be seen in the air.
'Snakes on a Plane' (2006)
We know probably the only thing people remember about "Snakes" is Samuel L. Jackson's masterful delivery of "I have had it with these motherf**king snakes on this motherf**king plane!" But expletive-filled quotes aside, this preposterous thriller about a gangster's Hail Mary pass to release a crate full of venomous snakes on a Boeing 747 (the only witness in his case is aboard, of course) is downright terrifying to anyone frightened of snakes, creepy crawlies and, you know, dying on a plane.
'Red Eye' (2005)
Usually, getting to sit next to a smartly dressed handsome man with killer blue eyes (Cillian Murphy) on a plane would be a dream come true. When that man starts to make strange comments that turn into an outright demand to take part in a terrorist plot to assassinate a powerful federal deputy and his family, however, your flight is going to start to go seriously downhill. Sure, the plane doesn't get hijacked or bombed or filled with snakes, but it's horrible just the same.
Jodie Foster has mastered the avenging-woman archetype in many memorable performances, including in this thriller about a grieving widow flying from Berlin to New York to bury her dead husband. Foster goes on the plane with her six-year-old daughter, but after waking from a nap, she realizes her daughter is missing ... only no one remembers seeing her little girl, and everyone from unsympathetic flight attendants to an Air Marshal believe her vanished daughter does not, in fact, exist. Worst movie for a flying mother to watch ever.
You forgot the Xanax, so as you board the plane, it's "Worst Case Scenario Time." What's the worst that could happen from fog-shrouded turbulence? You crash. You die. Or you don't. A few of your friends don't die, either … right away. You begin to starve. You eat your freshly deceased friends. Based on the real worst-case scenario that befell a Uruguayan rugby team in 1972, the film's a definite downer for air travelers troubled by depictions of mountain plane crashes, lingering deaths, cannibalism and avalanches.
'The Delta Force' (1986)
Long before Liam Neeson and his "particular set of skills" there was Chuck Norris and his gift for patriotic ass-kicking. During the "Expendables 2" star's heyday, he headlined "The Delta Force," in which he plays a special forces officer who brings down a group of Lebanese hijackers that took an intercontinental flight hostage. While the climax is thrilling, the hijacking sequence (particularly when they force a horrified German flight attendant to identify and separate all the Jewish passengers) is devastating.
Filled with so many breathless laughs and classic lines ("Don’t call me Shirley," "Joey, have you ever been in a Turkish prison?" and "I speak jive"), it's tempting to cure the monotony of every transcontinental red-eye with a loop of this satire of '70s drama "Airport." But since it concludes with a hilariously sweat-drenched emergency landing on a dark and stormy night, more sensitive passengers (or those with deficient sense of humor) might not appreciate the blow-up dolls in the cockpit and guitar-strumming nuns in coach.