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The Rocketeer (1991)

PG  |   |  Action, Adventure, Family  |  21 June 1991 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 41,194 users  
Reviews: 126 user | 80 critic

A young pilot stumbles onto a prototype jetpack that allows him to become a high flying masked hero.

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(graphic novel "The Rocketeer"), (story), 4 more credits »
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Title: The Rocketeer (1991)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Cliff (as Bill Campbell)
...
...
...
...
...
...
Fitch
...
Wooly
Robert Miranda ...
Spanish Johnny (as Robert Guy Miranda)
John Lavachielli ...
Rusty
...
Bigelow
...
Malcolm
...
...
Goose
Nada Despotovich ...
Irma
Edit

Storyline

Straight from the pages of a pulp comic from a past era, the Rocketeer recreates 1930's Hollywood, complete with gangsters, Nazi spies, and the growth of the Age of Aviation. Young pilot Cliff Secord stumbles on a top secret rocket-pack and with the help of his mechanic/mentor, Peevy, he attempts to save his girl and stop the Nazis as The Rocketeer. Written by Greg Bole <bole@life.bio.sunysb.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

gangster | nazi | blimp | aviation | 1930s | See All (44) »

Taglines:

An Ordinary Man Forced to Become An Extraordinary Hero. See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

21 June 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Rocketeer  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$35,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$46,704,056 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints) (as Dolby Stereo)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The actual Gee Bee used in filming was only allowed to land a very limited amount of times during it's time working on the movie as landings are extremely hard on the landing gear of this particular plane. See more »

Goofs

After Cliff puts on the rudder helmet so he can steer/control the rocket, he is frequently seen turning his head without changing his course or direction. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Peevy: [as they bring the Gee Bee out for its maiden flight] Keep her straight, keep her level. It's your first time up, so don't do anything interesting.
Cliff Secord: Who, me?
Peevy: And remember, she stalls out at about a hundred. So keep the air speed up. Otherwise, you're gonna be drifting around all over the sky. And if the ailerons start to shimmy...
Cliff Secord: Peevy, I have flown a plane or two in my life.
Peevy: Not like this one, you haven't. This one's... This one's a handful. You sneeze in this thing and you're ...
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

IN A SENTIMENTAL MOOD
Written by Duke Ellington
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User Reviews

Pretty enjoyable
3 July 2004 | by (Deming, New Mexico, USA) – See all my reviews

There's more fun to be had out of this movie than I'd expected. The story is given elsewhere so I'll pretty much skip it and get to the more important things, like the twenty-year-old Jennifer Connelly with her eyes of night and lips as bright as flame. She's a bit plumper (all over) than we're used to seeing her but it's okay because cartoon figures ought to be slightly overdone. She looks and sounds magnificent -- those two monumental and nacreous incisors, I guess. She could open mangoes with those teeth. Not that she's as beautiful as any woman possibly could be. Connelly COULD be better looking but if she were it would probably be against some law. Anyway, it would be hard for any normal man to stop from flinging himself at her feet and groveling over her toes.

Bill Campbell looks like a cartoon too. In fact everyone in the movie looks like a cartoon except the guy playing the huge thug working for Paul Sorvino. That guy doesn't look like a cartoon. He looks exactly like Rondo Hatten, an acromegalic actor from a few 40s horror flicks. But, it must be admitted, Rondo Hatten looked like a cartoon. And, well, if A = C and B = C, then A = B, no? It's a conundrum alright.

The movie is filled with delicious 1938 atmosphere. I wasn't around to enjoy it but it's always struck a resonant chord in me when I glimpse it in movies or listen to recordings from the period.

Here we have an Artie Shaw sort of band playing "Begin the Beguine" with a close simulation of that famous arrangement that made it such a hit. A smiling singer who looks like Nicole Kidman stands on the stage and sings without rolling around or smashing a guitar. Call me retro, but I prefer it to Snoop Dog Eeeze 2 Dudes. All seriousness aside, what happened to pop music anyway? Where are our Cole Porters and Ira Gershwins. Somebody hand me a hankie.

The production designer deserves a medal for capturing the exhilarating vulgarity of Southern California. I think I glimpsed a reproduction of Benvenuto Cellini's Apollo amidst the faux Egyptian columns.

I enjoyed the airplanes too. The one in the beginning of the movie was built exclusively for racing. (I forget its designation.) It was a horror to fly because it was hardly more than a huge engine with a tiny airplane built around it, as unstable a craft as ever took wing. Scary news footage exists of one of them zipping along at a tremendous rate and then, out of nowhere, kaboom, spinning deliriously into the ground at full speed. The 1930s were famous for their air races, like NASCAR is today. Heroes were made out of aviators. Airplanes that later became famous as fighters in WWII were first configured as racers -- Curtis P-40s, for instance, and the British Spitfires.

Of course it's an imitation of the Indiana Jones series and maybe an imitation of some Indiana Jones imitations, a kind of meta-imitation, but, gee, it's enjoyable. What atmosphere. And lots of action. Everybody and everything is turned into mincemeat one way or another but not in any way that's offensive.

It's really kind of engaging if you don't ask for significance.


19 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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