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The guru of teenager movies, John Hughes, enters the world of adults with this seasonal comedy based on the horrors of transportation in America. Two days before Thanksgiving, yuppie marketing consultant Neal Page (Steve Martin) races from Manhattan to catch a plane home to Chicago, only
to find that his flight has been delayed. Hours later, he boards the plane and ends up next to Del Griffith (John Candy), a huge slob wearing a polyester suit. When the flight is detoured to Wichita, it's just the beginning of Page's trip and his association with Griffith. With a concept as thin
as this, PLANES, TRAINS AND AUTOMOBILES could have easily become a repetitious bore. Instead, producer-director-writer Hughes infuses his film with an appealing sense of sentiment and humanity--not to mention many hilarious scenes. Candy finally has a bravura role and proves himself to be not only
a superb comedian but also a fine actor. Martin, in the less flamboyant of the two roles, is excellent as well. Hughes's insistence on cramming the film with a glut of pop songs (which in most cases do nothing to complement the action) is unfortunate.