The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, July 11, 1991, Summer, Page 11, Image 10

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    Film captures past
The Rocketeer’ relives the 1930s,
blasts off with perfect casting
“The Rocketeer”
Starring Bill Campbell,
Alan Arkin
: A+
By Michael Stock
Senior Reporter
“The Rocketeer” provides more
than a perfect Walt Disney Produc
tion’s tribute to the ’30s. “The Rock
eteer” is a piece of the ’30s.
Set in the booming Hollywood of
1938, “The Rocketeer” is a cinematic
feast of ’30s panorama, capturing the
gigantic, plush Hollywood of the star
svstem vears. The film is renlete with
references to Carole Lombard, Greta
Garbo and Myma Loy, and guest
“appearances” by actors playing Clark
Gable and W.C. Fields.
Like 1938’s ‘Test Pilot,” starring
Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy and Myma
Loy, “The Rocketeer” centers its
fanciful imagination around the grow
ing field of aviation.
Bill Campbell plays Clifford Sea
cord, an aspiring racing pilot. Sea
cord discovers a rocket pack meant to
be strapped on a person’s back, hid
den under the seat of his plane.
The pack, designed by Howard
Hughes for the U.S. military, has been
wriggled out from under the nose of
the FBI by the Mafia. After a high
speed chase in big, black cars, one of
the gangsters manages to hide the
rocket pack in Clifford’s plane before
being caught by G-men.
Aided by Pcavcy, played comforta
bly by Alan Arkin, Scacord’s older
mechanic and friend, the two set about *
to figure out how the rocket pack may
be used safely.
Meanwhile, both gangsters and G
mcn chase after Scacord and Pcavcy,
blowing holes in a lot of scenery.
However, in a fine comic-book fash
ion, very few of the bullets ever hit a
l he casting lor The Rocketeer”
is responsible for at least part of its
Perfectly cast in the role of the
villain, Timothy Dalton plays Nev
ille Sinclair — ‘‘Hollywood’s third
biggest box office draw” by his own
claim. Dalton’s character looks re
markably like Errol Flynn — older
and nastier, but just as slick. Dalton's
aura of evil is a refreshing change
after his slightly thick James Bond
Newcomer Campbell bears more
than a striking resemblance to the
James Stewart of the ’30s, in both
looks and characterization. Campbell’s
boyish innocence and puppy-dog eyes
beg with a Stewart-esque gleam.
As Jenny, Jennifer Connelly plays
the ’30s feminine foil perfectly, with
the sexual appeal of Jean Harlow and
the toughened practicality of Myma
“The Rocketeer” is pieced together
with a special magic that only Walt
Disney could fashion. The film is full
of ’30s inside jokes, cliches and one
liners like “lousy nickel-neck,” and
Sometimes the ’30s rhetoric, cli
ches and gibberish aren’t delivered as
convincingly as films made in the
’30s. In 1938, Gable and Tracy really
would nave said inings like dame
and “flatfoot.” Much of the action and
danger in the “The Rocketeer” is highly
rcminisccntof film serials of the ’30s,
particularly Buster Crabbc’s “Flash
The photography and technique in
“The Rocketeer” is as beautiful as
last summer’s “Dick Tracy.” How
ever, unlike “Dick Tracy,” “The
Rocketeer” manages a healthy plot
and no boredom for the kids.
“The Rocketeer” is so good that it
should have been filmed in black and
There could be no higher compli
Continued from Page 10
When we gel colds, we’re lold lo
drink lots of water. On hot summer
days we’re told to drink lots of water.
So i f you have a cold on a hot sum mcr
day, you may as well tape the garden
hose to your mouth and leave it on all
you’re as miserable as a summer cold
can make you, you have a right and an
obligation lo make those around you
miserable loo. Complain loudly about
how much it sucks to lake Nylol in
July. Moan about how much you’d
rather be outside enjoying the sun and
getting skin cancer. Misery loves
company and with summertime ill
nesses, there is just not a lot of com
pany. So make some. Sneeze on
doorknobs. Cough on fans. Wipc your
nose with the receiver on a pay phone.
By no means should you be content to
suffer alone.
Finally, if you do manage to give
someone your cold at about the lime
you’re starting to feel better, under no
circumstances should you show them
any pity. The idiots — it’s ihcir own
damn fault.
Hanna is a Daily Nebraskan reporter and
a May graduate of the University of Nc
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Continued from Page 10
in judgment in his adaptation of Leim
bach’s story.
He makes Gordon, a primary char
acter and Hilary’s eventual lover in
the Lcimbach novel, into a fringe
character with no real purpose. Al
though actor Vincent D’Onofrio gives
the role his best shot, the screenplay
doesn’t ever allow the character to
develop. As well, Fricdcnbcrg makes
ambiguous the original tragic ending.
C’mon, Richard, America can handle
a sad ending.
Fricdcnbcrg writes the tender scenes
well, though. An especially tender
scene shows Victor, an art enthusiast
working towards a Ph.D in art his
tory, teaching Hilary about his favor
ite artist, Klimt. Scenes showing Hi
lary comforting Victor after chemo
therapy, and Victor helping Hilary to
come to terms with his cancer also
add tenderness to the film.
Roberts, as always, is appealing
and spirited in her role. She tosses her
hair a lot and smiles her toothy grin,
but she illustrates a compassionate
side as Hilary. With each role she’s
undertaken, Roberts has proven her
box-office appeal.
But while it is the tremendously
appealing Roberts and her toothy smile
that will draw most viewers to this
movie, it is Scott that will make them
Following up his fabulous portrayal
i of Willy in last year’s “Longtime
Companion,” the immensely talented
| Scott proves to be the real star of this
movie. His portrayal of the intellec
tual, gentle Victor is both moving and
sensitive. As Roberts’ breakthrough
role was in the sleeper comedy “Mystic
Pizza,” Scott’s breakthrough role very
well could be “Dying Young.”
And unlike many films, “Dying
Young” has music that adds a subtle
shading to the effect rather than over
powering it completely. The instru
mentals by Kenny G. and James
Newton Howard arc never obtrusive,
yet stick with the audience long after
the last tear is shed in the theatre.
“Dying Young” is playing at the
Lincoln Theatre, 12th and P streets.
17th & ’N' St.
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