Nov 122022

Planes, Trains and Automobiles is still a fantastic, hilarious and, in John Hughes fashion, heartwarming film. For me and my family, it hasn’t quite risen to the traditional yearly viewing that Christmas Vacation has become, but certainly this should be required viewing as well.



Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Genre(s): Comedy, Adventure
Paramount | R – 92 min. – $25.99| November 22, 2022

Date Published: 11/12/2022 | Author: The Movieman

Directed by: John Hughes
Writer(s): John Hughes (written by)
Cast: Steve Martin, John Candy

Features: Featurettes, Deleted Scenes
Slip Cover: Yes
Digital Copy: Yes
Formats Included: 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray (bonus features only)
Number of Discs: 2

Audio: English (DTS-HD MA 5.1), German (Dolby Digital 2.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 2.0), Spanish (Dolby Digital 1.0), French (Dolby Digital 2.0), Italian (Dolby Digital 2.0), Portuguese (Dolby Digital 1.0)
Video: 2160p/Widescreen 1.85
Dynamic Range: HDR10
Subtitles: English SDH, English, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Norwegian, Portuguese, Spanish, Swedish
Codecs: HEVC / H.265
Region(s): A, B, C

Paramount provided me with a free copy of the Blu-ray I reviewed in this Blog Post.
The opinions I share are my own.

THE MOVIE — 4½/5

Plot Synopsis: Neal Page (STEVE MARTIN) is an uptight advertising executive trying to get home to Chicago for Thanksgiving. When his flight is rerouted to Wichita, he reluctantly partners with Del Griffith (JOHN CANDY), an obnoxious yet loveable shower ring curtain salesman. Together, they embark on a cross-country adventure that includes various modes of transportation, insane mishaps, and unforgettable rental car shenanigans.

Quick Hit Review: One could argue Writer/Producer/Director John Hughes was the king of the 1980s and early ‘90s with smash hits, and timeless classics, like The Breakfast Club, Christmas Vacation (a holiday tradition in my house), Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Home Alone, Vacation, Weird Science and so many others to even list, films that have stood the test of time and are still well regards today and have found new audiences thanks to DVD and Blu-ray.

Planes, Trains & Automobiles is one such classic that is quintessential Hughes combining absolutely hilarious, often to the extreme (driving a burnt out car), scenes with poignant drama that has heart. Nobody did it like John Hughes and I’d be hard pressed to see anyone doing so in the future (though Judd Apatow has come close mixing raunchy comedy with romance in movies like The 40-Year-Old Virgin and Forgetting Sarah Marshall). Of course, his later writing before his death in 2009 couldn’t hold a candle to his 1980s self (if one wants proof, one needs only to stop at Home Alone 3).

Hughes is only part of the equation that made PT&A as funny as it was and when you combine the comedic talents of Steve Martin and John Candy, both playing character personalities similar to what we’ve seen before (or since) like Father of the Bride for Martin and Summer Rental for Candy (which, on a side note, was a decent if not forgettable little comedy). Together, they make the perfect odd couple, both with their own quirks and flaws but in the end with a big heart.

If for whatever reason you haven’t seen Planes, Trains & Automobiles, now would be the time. In fact, you could make it a John Hughes weekend with so many classics in his career.



This release comes with a semi-glossy slip cover and inside a redemption code of the Digital HD copy.


  • Getting There is Half the Fun: The Story of Planes, Trains and Automobiles (16:38) is a standard ‘making-of’ featurette starting with a press conference participants by cast members Steve Martin, John Candy and John Hughes.
  • John Hughes: Life Moves Pretty Fast (TRT 53:31) – This covers two additional featurettes (“John Hughes: The Voice of a Generation”, “Heartbreak and Triumph: The Legacy of John Hughes”) centered around the life, times and impact that John Hughes has had over the years. Both featurettes offer a fair amount of background on Hughes including sound bites from the writer/director himself as well as Matthew Broderick and others.
  • John Hughes for Adults (4:02) – This features more footage from the press conference but specifically covers Hughes tackling a more adult comedy versus something geared towards teens.
  • A Tribute to John Candy (3:01) is a featurette that is comprised of footage from the press conference as Martin talks about the talented John Candy. The featurette also includes interviews with Michael McKean, Edie McClurg (the car rental agent) and others who knew him.


  • Deleted and Extended Scenes (1:15:27) — This is pretty much, beyond the video, the big new feature of this latest release. There are 10 scenes, including the previous “Airplane Food” scene, and it is nice to see these that were recently unearth from John Hughes’ archives. The quality isn’t the best as they were sourced from VHS tapes yet still worth checking out.

Audition: Dylan Baker “Owen” (3:34) — Here we get to see the young Baker audition tape.



VIDEO – 4/5

Paramount once more releases Planes, Trains and Automobiles, this time on 4K Ultra HD where it’s presented, I think for the first time, in its original 1.85 widescreen aspect ratio (previous Blu-rays were open matted to 1.78). Detail on this was decent enough and colors are nicely balanced. This definitely has the veneer of a 1980s movie getting the 4K upgrade, and here you generally don’t see the natural grain, but that said, I would say it’s a solid improvement over the Blu-ray format.

AUDIO – 3½/5

The disc comes with an adequate if not unremarkable DTS-HD MA 5.1 track. This no doubt is an upgrade over its DVD counterpart but at the same time most items are fairly flat, not only the dialogue, but some of the more “action” scenes; there’s little depth to any of it.


OVERALL — 3½/5

Planes, Trains and Automobiles is still a fantastic, hilarious and, in John Hughes fashion, heartwarming film. For me and my family, it hasn’t quite risen to the traditional yearly viewing that Christmas Vacation has become, but certainly this should be required viewing as well.


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