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Executive Decision (1996)

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When terrorists seize control of an airliner, an intelligence analyst accompanies a commando unit for a midair boarding operation.

Director:

Stuart Baird
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kurt Russell ... David Grant
Steven Seagal ... Lt. Colonel Austin Travis
Halle Berry ... Jean
John Leguizamo ... Rat
Oliver Platt ... Cahill
Joe Morton ... Cappy
David Suchet ... Nagi Hassan
BD Wong ... Louie (as B. D. Wong)
Len Cariou ... Secretary of Defense Charles White
Whip Hubley ... Baker
Andreas Katsulas ... Jaffa
Mary Ellen Trainor ... Allison
Marla Maples ... Nancy (as Marla Maples Trump)
J.T. Walsh ... Senator Mavros
Ingo Neuhaus ... Doc
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Storyline

Terrorists take over a 747 bound from Athens to Washington D.C., supposedly to effect the release of their leader. Intelligence expert David Grant suspects another reason and convinces the military that the 'plane should not be allowed to enter U.S. airspace. An assault mission is devised, using a specially equipped 'plane designed for mid-air crew transfers, and Grant finds himself aboard the 747 with a team of military anti-terrorists who have to defuse a bomb and overpower the terrorists. Written by Ron Kerrigan <mvg@whidbey.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Fasten your seat belts See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

15 March 1996 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Executive Action See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$55,000,000 (estimated)

Gross USA:

$56,569,216

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$121,969,216
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The plane used by Special Forces is a modified F-117-type, with a mating tube to a 747. See more »

Goofs

The lights surrounding the runway at Dulles change. See more »

Quotes

[as Jean shows a seat number to the hidden camera]
David GrantBaker: 2, 1, K... 21K!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The UK cinema, video and DVD versions have two small cuts. First, during the attack at the beginning of the film there are cuts to the use of the knife by the 'Steven Seagal (I)' character, on three of the bad guys. Another strange cut occurs on the plane during the hijack. Al Tar, the David Suchet character, is seen rising from a praying position to answer a phone call from the cockpit. The UK version shows him answering the phone only, you do not know he has been praying. See more »

Connections

Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Kurt Russell Performances (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

It's Nice to Go Trav'ling
Written by Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen (as James Van Heusen)
Performed by Frank Sinatra
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under Licence from CEMA Special Markets
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Skillfully crafted, and exciting
30 July 2009 | by Samiam3See all my reviews

I am curious to know how many Steven Seagal fans walked out of the theater after the first twenty minutes demanding their money back. It is a good thing that Exectutive Decision does not direct its attention towards Seagal. Instead it chooses to focus on suspense and thrills which is exactly what it offers. It is slow and ominous, even claustrophobic at times. The plot stays consistent, never getting too thick, and it keeps you focused, Which is good enough for me.

It will be hard to watch Executive Decision today and not think about 9/11. Islamic terrorists from Algeria highjack a 747 flying from Athens to D.C. they have loaded a nuclear weapon on board, and they are giving the US government until landing time to free one of the leading Islamic terrorist they have in custody, or they blow Washington. A small team of soldiers are sent out in a small aircraft, which will latch on to the jet and allow them to board in secret. With them is intelligence consultant David Grant, who knows that there is a bomb on board and what it is capable of. confined to the labyrinth of tiny corridors and storage cabins, our heroes have only a few hours, to find the bomb, defuse it and take out the terrorists, without being seen.

This is the directorial debut for Oscar nominated editor Stuart Baird, and he does a sensational job of crafting tension. It is not until the climactic twenty minutes where Executive Decision lets out all its energy. Baird really takes his time, and just occasionally it feels like the story could use a little tightening, but not too much.

The movie is not meant to be mind enriching, but in a way it does make you realize, how much we took freedom and safety for granted, before 9/11 occurred. If that disturbs you, than perhaps you should not see this movie. Anyone else who wants to be thrilled and on the edge of their seat should watch this one for sure


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