Kudos to Judge Stewart for his review of Fate Is The Hunter. That has always been one of my favorites, and now that I have ordered the DVD I can let go of my grainy bootleg version.
I do feel the need to expand on one point that was alluded to by the Rebuttal Witnesses. Although the movie can stand on its own very well, readers of the original Ernest K. Gann novel will realize it bears little resemblance to the book. So much so, in fact, that Gann demanded (unsuccessfully) to have his name removed from the credits. The book details the life of a pilot (based loosely on Gann) from his early days as a trainee with American Airlines through the WWII years flying with the Air Transport Command, to his postwar career with some seedy non-sched carriers. The crash and subsequent investigation portrayed in the movie were nowhere to be found in the book. Devotees of Gann's novels need to realize this movie must be taken on its own, and not to expect to see the book recreated on the screen, or they will be sorely disappointed.
One other item, my wife saw the movie with me once, and said she couldn't believe it was made as late as 1964. The orchestral soundtrack and the black and white presentation (at the time when most "disaster" movies had already gone to color) made it seem like something from 10 years earlier.
A bit of trivia about the "jet" used in the movie, it was a Hollywood mockup based on a DC-7 propliner. They took the engines off and bobbed the nacelles, added fake swept wingtips, hung the "jet engines" under the tail, and added some Boeing 707 style antenna probes to make it look like a jetliner.