“The Rocketeer” could have easily been a forgettable movie. The special effects pale in comparison with modern superhero movies (or even “Terminator 2,” which came out the same year) and the origin story isn’t too thought-provoking. But the setting is what makes this movie memorable. The 1930's gangster culture and the contrast between Hollywood society and aviators make for several interesting dynamics. There is just something magical about a man with a jet pack flying through Golden Age Hollywood. Or perhaps it is the musical score by James Horner, saturating the film with heroism. Whatever the reason, this edgy Disney film became a cult classic. From the moment that Horner’s Rocketeer theme (one of my favorites) plays during the opening credits, you know that it is going to be a classic. The acting of Billy Campbell and Alan Arkin is decent, and it’s interesting to see 21-year-old Jennifer Connelly. But for me, the highlight is Timothy Dalton as Neville Sinclair. He gives this character so much depth with that Bond-like smoothness. “The Rocketeer” doesn’t have the greatest special effects and the story is a bit too coincidental, but it is full of great action sequences and will leave you feeling nostalgic.
[Pictured: He isn't the most memorable hero, but that jet pack is iconic!]