Genre Grandeur – Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987) – MovieRob (Encore Review)

For the first entry in this month’s Genre Grandeur – Holiday movies, here’s a review by me  of my favorite movie centered around Thanksgiving.

Next month’s genre has been chosen by my good friend Emma of emmakwall (explains it all) and she has chosen the genre of British Thrillers, so send me your reviews of your favorite British Thriller(s) by Jan 25th and I’ll post it.  It’s real simple, just send me an email to and I’ll post it.

Let’s see what I thought of John Hughes’ best holiday road trip movie

 planes, trains and automobiles“You know everything is not an anecdote. You have to discriminate. You choose things that are funny or mildly amusing or interesting. You’re a miracle! Your stories have NONE of that. They’re not even amusing ACCIDENTALLY! “Honey, I’d like you to meet Del Griffith, he’s got some amusing anecodotes for you. Oh and here’s a gun so you can blow your brains out. You’ll thank me for it.” I could tolerate any insurance seminar. For days I could sit there and listen to them go on and on with a big smile on my face. They’d say, “How can you stand it?” I’d say, “‘Cause I’ve been with Del Griffith. I can take ANYTHING.” You know what they’d say? They’d say, “I know what you mean. The shower curtain ring guy. Woah.” It’s like going on a date with a Chatty Cathy doll. I expect you have a little string on your chest, you know, that I pull out and have to snap back. Except I wouldn’t pull it out and snap it back – you would. Agh! Agh! Agh! Agh! And by the way, you know, when you’re telling these little stories? Here’s a good idea – have a POINT. It makes it SO much more interesting for the listener! ” – Neal

Number of Times Seen – Too numerous to count (Theater in ’87, cable, video, DVD, 10 Jun 2013 and 25 Dec 2014)

Link to original reviewHere

Brief Synopsis – Two very different businessmen stranded together while travelling home from NYC to Chicago for Thanksgiving must work together to get there on time.

My Take on it – I have always loved this movie and for so many years now have been able to quote so many great lines from it.

John Hughes was usually more successful writing scripts for teenagers, but this is perhaps his best ‘adult themed’ movie and its excellent!

His characters are usually very well developed and in this movie, all he had to do was create two very different personality type characters and force them to interact.

Instant modern classic comedy.

Steve Martin and John Candy were truly amazing in these roles and I think that these are probably their best roles ever (especially Candy).

The script is unbelievably done because they have just the right amount of perfectly written humor, dialogue and situations to make everything just gel together excellently.

Bottom Line – By far, Hughes’ best ‘adult themed’ comedy movie. Martin and Candy are awesome together and have created a modern classic with their characters. The writing is superb with the dialogue, jokes and situations all gelling together perfectly. Highly recommended!

Rating – Oscar Worthy (no change from original review)


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14 thoughts on “Genre Grandeur – Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987) – MovieRob (Encore Review)

    • completely agree. this script was written really fast by Hughes (3 days apparently) and there is a rumor that there was a 3 hour cut. I’d love to have seen that. Spending 3 hours with Neal and Del sounds like such a treat!

      Liked by 1 person

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