Time: 93 Minutes
This film has got to be hands down one of the funniest movies ever made. Though I would suggest not watching it after traveling, as it might be more of a painful reminder than a hysterical interlude. Martin and Candy are at their very best as two men just trying to get from New York to Chicago before Thanksgiving. As the title suggest, they use every type of traveling conveyance on their 3 day journey to hell and back. Having recently had a trip a third as painful, all I can say is blood would have been shed if their experiences had happened to me. What makes the situations funny, besides the great writing and acting, is the fact that this is not happening to you. There's nothing funnier than other peoples pain, and PLANES, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILES is a perfect example of that tenet. The first 10 times I saw this movie, I sided with Martin's character, finding Candy to be the most annoying creature on Earth. However, this last time, I finally saw the brilliance of John Candy and felt the desperate loneliness of his character. You will never forget Dell Griffith due to Candy's pitch perfect performance. Martin is also amazing, but he has the showier, more sympathetic role. Fat is funny, but you don't want to share a bed with it.
From the get go, you know that Neal (Martin) will not be making his evening flight out of New York. If he did, there'd be no movie. In an amazing chase scene that must have really pissed off real New Yorkers, Neal battles with another New Yorker, played by Kevin Bacon, for what seems to be the last cab on Earth. He gets there in time, but is tripped by a large trunk and loses the coveted prize. Once at the airport things don't get any better. The flight is delayed, he's bumped from first class to coach and stuck next to the most annoying man you never want to meet Dell Griffith (Candy), shower curtain ring salesman. Not only does he encroach on Neal's physical space, but he refuses to leave him in peace, chattering away the entire flight. When their flight is rerouted to Kansas and they are stranded for the night, Neal has no choice but to accept Dell's bighearted offer to share his room, which is the last in the city. The room sequence is one of the funniest in the movie and gives both men plenty of room to showcase their prodigious comedic talents. Martin delivers the first of his classic tirades, deriding Dell for essentially being a plague on humanity for his insensitivity and bad habits. Dell is hurt by the Neal's comments, but refuses to back down. Many people like him. Maybe it's Neal who has the problem. Candy is so good here, you'll begin to think that too.