The Rocketeer is one of cinema’s great stumbles. Not that it’s a bad film, mind you. It’s actually an incredibly fun film, a heartfelt little piece of Americana mixed blended into a comic book movie. It’s got a stellar cast — Billy Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Paul Sorvino, Terry O’Quinn, Alan Arkin and a delightfully villanous Timothy Dalton. Its effects are simple but effective, and it’s got a good dose of cleverness to it. It’s a movie I’m happy to blow a Sunday afternoon on when it comes on a random cable channel.
Frankly, it gives me a little more hope for Captain America, which is also directed by Joe Johnston.
But it absolutely bombed at the box office, and the critical reviews were pretty unkind. It’s gotten a second life via DVD, and has achieved a bit of a cult status as well. Sadly, the comic’s original creator, Dave Stevens, died back in 2008. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the film, and animator John Banana created this adorable little Pixar-esque film as an homage to the film and to Stevens. It’s way too short, but it’s quite fun.
See, wasn’t that worth your time?