The Rocketeer (Bilingual)
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The discovery of a top-secret jetpack hurls test pilot Cliff Secord into a daring adventure of mystery, suspense, and intrigue! Cliff encounters an assortment of ruthless villains, led by a Hollywood screen star who's a secret Nazi spy (Timothy Dalton). With the help of his actress girlfriend, the young pilot battles enormous odds to defeat his foes who are anxious to use the device in an evil plan to rule the world! The dangerous mission transforms the ordinary young man into an extraordinary hero!
Based on a retro-styled comic book hit of the '80s, this Disney film was meant to launch a whole line of Rocketeer films--but the series began and ended with this one. That's too bad, because this underrated Joe Johnston film has a certain loopy charm. The story centers on a pre-World War II stunt pilot (Bill Campbell) who accidentally comes into possession of a rocket-propelled backpack much coveted by the Nazis. With the aid of his mechanic pal (Alan Arkin), he gets it up and running, then uses it to foil a plot by a gang of vicious Nazi spies (is there any other kind?) led by Timothy Dalton. Jennifer Connelly is on hand as the love interest, but the real fun here is when the Rocketeer takes off. There's also a nifty battle atop an airborne blimp. --Marshall Fine --This text refers to the VHS Tape edition.See all Product Description
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My rating: 5 out of 5
To start, the framing has been noticably cropped from its original 2.35:1 Panavision scope aspect ratio. If you are familiar with the original widescreen/letterbox laserdisc that Disney released, you'll find that this DVD sports the exact same composite video transfer with all of its inherent problems intact. No new high definition master was created for this release.
The only thing of merrit is that the ORIGINAL 5.1 surround track was used to encode it to Dolby Digital 5.1 audio. Yup, the packaging is in error. You're in for a treat as the split surround channels are pretty darn active considering it was mixed in the early days of 5.1 digital surround equipped cinemas.
Hopefully, Disney will re-do this DVD in the near future. They created a fresh transfer for The Santa Clause SE, so why not the superior The Rocketeer??
Most notably, it was lifted by Republic Pictures for use in its 1949 serial "King of the Rocketmen". Proving popular there, it was recycled into a flying device for the character "Commando Cody" (not "Commander" Cody, as many people erroneously believe) in the chapterplay "Radar Men From the Moon",on then into "Zombies of the Stratosphere"(with young Leonard Nimoy as an alien baddie) and, lastly, into the tv series "Commando Cody" with Judd Holdren. The famous rocket back pack ,strapped to a hip-length leather jacket and complemented by the metallic, bullet-shaped helmet of the wearer, became a staple of 50s adventurism.
Years later artist Dave Stevens wanted to do a comic book version of the Rocketman/Commando Cody character but Republic wouldn't license it...so Stevens revamped the entire concept and created the Rocketeer instead.Threw in "Bondage Bettie" Page for eye candy (and perilous predicaments), and had himself a winner.
When Disney decided to do the Rocketeer as a live action "pilot" for a proposed series, they made a good decision. They just didn't market it correctly and made too abrupt a decision not to continue with it.
This is a good movie. It could have been better, but it is good nonetheless. My complaints about it are twofold storywise; one, I think they should have left "Bettie" alone and played an inside joke with the audience. They should have had her elaborately TIED UP at some point.Read more ›
The leads are appealing and charismatic. There is a real chemistry between Bill Campbell and Jennifer Connelly -- they were a couple in real life at the time, which I'm sure didn't hurt.
As far as comic book adaptations go, The Rocketeer is quite faithful to its source material with the notable exception of the Disney-fication of Connelly's character which is understandable. Her more Betty Page-esque comic book counterpart might have given the film a problem securing a PG rating. No matter, this is a fine adaptation and one only hopes that Disney will replace this bare bones DVD with a lavish special edition as they have done with both Tron and 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea.
Most recent customer reviews
The film itself is very good...however the "pillar box" aspect ratio is deplorable and annoying. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Johnny-boy
When Cliff Secord stumbles upon a rocket pack stashed away in an airplane, him and his friend Peevy soon find themselves on the run from gangsters with ties to the Nazis. Read morePublished 11 months ago by A.P. Fuchs, author of The Axiom-man Saga
Nice family friendly movie, very entertaining, great picture and soundPublished 12 months ago by SAM
The 20 years edition is really great. With the image is be digital.
Is style good when i sow on tv 20 years ago
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