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The Last Flight of Noah’s Ark (1980)

| June 27, 1980

Safe to say that no one who went to see a Disney film on June 27, 1980 came away unscathed.  The kids had a choice of either an out-of-gas fourth Herbie movie or this out-of-gas adventure movie that can’t seem to get itself together long enough to fulfill any manageable expectation.  It feels like that last gasp of a studio struggling to keep its head above water.  Here we have a movie that fails as an action picture, a romance movie, an animal picture and certainly as a comedy.  It’s a shadow of a shadow of Disney’s former glory days.

The movie deals with a pilot Noah Dugan (Elliott Gould) who is in need of work and is hired by a French-Canadian Missionary named Bernadette (Genevieve Bujold) to fly a World War II B-29 to a remote island.  The cargo is a large assortment of livestock that she wants to deliver to a small village.  Along for the ride are two kids, Julie (Tammy Lauren) and Bobby (Ricky Schroeder) who have stowed away in the plane’s compartments.

Predictably, the plane goes off-course and has to crash land on a tiny Pacific island where they discover two former Japanese soldiers named Cleveland (John Fujioka) and Hiro (Yuki Shimada) who don’t know that the war has ended.  The possibilities of breaking the language barrier are immediately shattered when it is revealed the one speaks English.

Anyway, the survivors have to figure out how to get off this God-forsaken island and the only solution is to turn the wrecked plane into a usable raft.  They do and they set sail only to be rescued by the Coast Guard after a shark attack and a massive storm.  You see all of this coming, along with a half-baked romance between Noah and Bernadette which requires them to fight a lot and then fall into each other’s arms for a clean G-rated passion.  Ulk!  This whole movie is ulk!

About the Author:

Jerry Roberts is a film critic and operator of two websites, Armchair Cinema and Armchair Oscars.
(1980) View IMDB Filed in: Uncategorized