History Main / TheRocketeer

6th Jan '12 8:18:30 AM PaulA
Is there an issue? Send a Message


[[redirect:Film/TheRocketeer]]

to:

[[redirect:Film/TheRocketeer]]''The Rocketeer'' can refer to:

* ''ComicBook/TheRocketeer'', the comic book
* ''Film/TheRocketeer'', the film adaptation
----
30th Nov '11 8:48:34 AM Nightsky
Is there an issue? Send a Message


[[quoteright:301:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Rocketeermovieposter.jpg]]

A 1991 Disney live-action film, adapted from Dave Stevens' series of comic books, ''The Rocketeer'' follows the adventures of its titular hero: stunt pilot Cliff Secord, who uses a serendipitously found experimental rocket pack to fight crime in [[TheThirties 1938]] LosAngeles.

Anticipating by a dozen years the trend towards more naturalistic (as opposed to heavily stylized, e.g. ''Film/DickTracy'') film adaptations of comic books, ''The Rocketeer'' is, if not an exceptional movie, still an underrated and unexpectedly strong one. Perhaps this is due to solid casting choices (Alan Arkin, as Cliff's mentor, has most of the best lines, and delivers them with terrific understated dryness), perhaps due to its lovely Art Deco art design, or perhaps due to an exceptionally butt-kicking score by James Horner. It is a "family movie" in the best sense of the term.

It was nominated for a Hugo in 1992, but lost to ''{{Terminator}} 2: Judgment Day''.

----
!!Provides examples of:
* AccentRelapse: [[spoiler:Neville Sinclair switches from a British accent to a German accent after he is unmasked as a Nazi spy. In case the heroes were to ''forget'' he was evil...?]]
* AcePilot: played straight with Cliff, a stunt pilot; subverted with Malcolm, allegedly a WorldWarOne ace, but now in his dotage.
* AllPartOfTheShow: Said word for word when the Rocketeer first appears, and saves bumbling pilot Malcolm from fiery death. However, the airfield owner saying that has a hard time keeping up that line as the crashing plane destroys ''another'' of his fuel trucks.
* AlternateHistory / AlternateUniverse: But only ''slightly'' so. Everything's mostly the same as it was in our 1938, except Howard Hughes has invented a jetpack, the Germans still use zeppelins, and the Hollywoodland sign ends up losing the "-land" eleven years early.
* AluminumChristmasTrees: Believe it or not, ridiculously-shaped buildings like the Bulldog Cafe really ''did'' exist; they were something of a fad in midcentury LosAngeles. Perhaps the most famous is the Brown Derby restaurant, a stars' hangout in old-time Hollywood and the place where the Cobb salad was invented. Since they were built for novelty, not durability, most are gone--but a handful survive, most notably [[http://randys-donuts.com/frame.html Randy's Donuts]] of Inglewood, which is shaped like a giant donut.
-->'''NickFury''': ''[[{{Film/IronMan}} Sir, I'm gonna have to ask you to exit the donut!]]''
* AreWeGettingThis: At the airshow.
* [[AscendedFanboy Ascended Fangirl]]: Jenny, until she realizes Neville is a creep. [[spoiler: And a Nazi spy.]]
* BigDamnHeroes: Cliff, Jennifer and the gangsters are all held at gunpoint by Nazi paratroopers, about to be mowed down at Sinclair's order. Suddenly, headlights light up and armed men appear with tommy guns while their leader roars, "This is the '''FBI'''! Throw down your guns!"
** Then, later on, Howard Hughes and Peevy show up in an autogyro and rescue Cliff and Jenny from the exploding zeppelin.
* BilingualBonus: The German is left untranslated, though they got one bit of German wrong. At one point, the Nazi G-Man says "Ich habe meine Bestellung", which means "I have my orders", but "Bestellung" actually refers to the type of orders you'd give a waiter. He should've said "Befehle".
* BookcasePassage: In Neville Sinclair's mansion.
* BruceWayneHeldHostage: Valentine's mooks keep the airshow pilots--Cliff included--hostage at the cafe.
* TheBrute: Lothar.
* TheCasanova: Subverted; Neville tries to seduce Jenny, but his chat-up lines are all from his own movies which Jenny (as an avid fan) knows off by heart.
** The BookcasePassage to [[spoiler: Neville's Nazi communications room]] was even opened by a book called "The Conquests of Casanova".
* ChekhovsGun: The Nazi airship is briefly mentioned in a newsreel the characters watch at the opening of the film. You've probably forgotten all about it until it [[OhCrap suddenly shows up overhead]] at the climax.
** The bullet hole in the rocket pack.
** Cliff's habit of chewing gum, which saves his life covering the bullet hole on the rocket pack [[spoiler: and dooms Neville Sinclair's when Cliff slides it off.]] So would this be [[IncrediblyLamePun Chekhov's gum?]]
* ClimbingClimax
* CoolOldGuy: Peevy.
* CoolPlane: Actual flying GeeBee racer replicas
* CreatorCameo: Blink and you'll miss him, but that's ''Rocketeer'' creator Dave Stevens playing the test pilot in the German film Howard Hughes shows Cliff.
* DamselInDistress: Subverted, somewhat, as Jenny does participate in her own rescue.
* DanceOfRomance: Neville Sinclair attempts to invoke this in his seduction of Jenny at the South Seas Club. It doesn't stick.
* TheDanza: JenniferConnelly as Jenny.
* DeathFromAbove: The airship.
* DeepCoverAgent: [[spoiler:Neville Sinclair.]]
* DieselPunk: The art direction has a lovely Deco Punk look.
* DisneyVillainDeath: A variation: [[spoiler:Sinclair voluntarily flies out of the zeppelin with the rocketpack, but its fuel leak causes it to burst into a massive fireball, causing Neville to crash into the Hollywoodland sign and explode spectacularly]].
* DisposablePilot: As Neville Sinclair is making his escape aboard a Nazi zeppelin, the captain tells Sinclair that their pilot is the best in Germany, when Lothar's unconscious body knocks the pilot out of the zeppelin.
* EnemyMine: [[spoiler:During a gunfight in the climax, Valentine finds himself fighting the Nazis alongside the police chief. They glance at each other, and then resume firing.]]
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Eddie Valentine [[spoiler:quits working for Sinclair after finding out he's a Nazi.]]
-->'''Valentine:''' [[spoiler:[[CrowningMomentOfAwesome Now I may not make an honest buck, but I'm 100% American.]]]]
** [[spoiler:Almost TruthInTelevision as a lot of RealLife American gangsters during that era weren't too thrilled with fascism, especially because Mussolini persecuted the Sicilian Families back in the Old Country. And Hitler wasn't a favorite of the Jewish mobsters either.]]
* {{Expy}}: Lothar is Rondo Hatton, while Neville Sinclair is Errol Flynn, [[spoiler:who was (wrongly) accused of being a Nazi spy.]]
** From the original comics, Jenny is supposed to be Betty Page. That didn't apparently translate to the film...
* ExtraExtraReadAllAboutIt
* FanService: JenniferConnelly, as she puts on a stocking; her cleavage in the latter parts of the movie. Or basically, just Jennifer Connelly. [[http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSFU3L4mrxEtzc400R1q8mbRAhFmltOuhuZh_xuPMcjLdVlbHZxUw 20-year-old Jennifer Connelly]]. Wow.
* FloatingHeadSyndrome: One of the DVD release's many sins. The Blu-Ray release, too. All this despite the beautiful Art Deco poster (see page image)... it is to weep.
* GeorgeLucasThrowback: To the adventure serials of the 1930s. See also TwoFistedTales.
* GiantMook: Lothar.
* GlamorousWartimeSinger: At the South Seas Club.
* GoSeduceMyArchnemesis
* GreasySpoon: The Bulldog Cafe.
* GroinAttack: Cliff tries this against Lothar aboard the zeppelin, though it only annoys Lothar, and worse, Cliff gets hurt trying it.
* {{Handwave}}: The reason the jetpack's operator's legs don't get fried to a crisp by the exhaust is that it's a "cool" propulsion powered by alcohol.
* HelloAgainOfficer: Cliff keeps running into the same three feds...
* HistoricalDomainCharacter: Howard Hughes.
* HistoricalInJoke:
** Cliff escapes from Howard Hughes by grabbing a (large) model plane and jumping off a balcony, gliding to safety. The plane is a model of the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spruce_goose "Spruce Goose"]], and Hughes comments, "The son-of-a-bitch ''will'' fly."
** LosAngeles' famous "Hollywood" sign used to read "Hollywoodland". [[spoiler:Neville Sinclair makes a dramatic exit from the burning airship (see SoLongSuckers, below), right after he smirks "I'll ''miss'' Hollywood..." He then crashes into the last four letters of the sign, obliterating them. (In reality, the "-land" was removed in 1949, to reduce maintenance costs.)]]
** The newsreel shows that the first place to be visited by the German zeppelin is [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindenburg_disaster Lakehurst]].
* [[IHaveYourWife I Have Your Girl]] / ComeAlone: Cliff is summoned to the Griffith Park Observatory. Hey, it was 1938; these tropes were NEW!
* JetPack
** Plus the plot consists of thwarting StupidJetpackHitler
* LethallyExpensive: When Howard Hughes shows Cliff the Nazi propaganda film, he says "Keep watching, kid. It cost a man's life to get this out of Germany."
* LineOfSightName: After such false starts as "Rocketman" and "Rocketboy", Bigelow coins "Rocket''eer''" after seeing the word "Pioneer".
* LookMaNoPlane
* MaleGaze: When Jenny is introduced to famed comedian W.C. Fields, the camera shows us exactly why he is "Charmed. '''Doubly''' charmed" to meet her.
* MatchCut: Hills to a close-up of bedsheets; a flaming airship to a bunch of oranges.
* MentorOccupationalHazard: {{Averted}}--Peevy makes it to the end.
* MiddleManagementMook: Eddie Valentine
* MookFaceTurn: [[spoiler:Eddie Valentine, because working for a Nazi is [[NotWhatISignedOnFor not what he signed on for.]]]]
* MrFixit: Peevy
* MsFanservice: JenniferConnelly at her peak.
* NaziGermany: As the BigBad.
* NeedleInAStackOfNeedles: When Cliff arrives at the South Seas Club, he hides the rocket and helmet in a laundry bag in the laundry room. When he returns, he finds the room full of a dozen more bags.
* {{Newsreel}}
* NonindicativeName: In fact, everyone keeps calling the device in question "The Rocket" when everything that's shown tells us it's basically a jet engine.
** Completely justified by the fact that in 1938 "jet engine" was something that only few people were aware of and even fewer could have recognized one.
* NoPlansNoPrototypeNoBackup: Averted. The rocket pack we see ''is'' the protoype; Howard Hughes ''burns'' the plans ten minutes in, but Peevy draws new ones, with plans to build an improved version.
* NotWearingTights
* NotWhatISignedOnFor: Valentine.
* OperaGloves: Jenny
* ParrotExpowhat: "The Rock-a-''who?''"
* PoliceAreUseless: Until the end.
* TheQuisling: [[spoiler: Neville Sinclair.]]
* RecycledTrailerMusic: This movie may not be very well-remembered, but unless you haven't been to a movie theater since 1991, you absolutely have heard this score used in trailers for [[strike:dozens]] hundreds of other movies. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HzNhQefDvH0 Have a listen.]]
* RomanceOnTheSet: Lead actors Bill Campbell and JenniferConnelly had a romance leading to a lengthy engagement, though they eventually called it off.
* SecretIdentity: Toyed with. The movie's compressed timescale (it takes place over three days) means that, over the course of the movie, Cliff's identity is a secret only in that it hasn't been publicly revealed, and not a lot of people have heard of the Rocketeer. There's no indication that he was trying particularly hard to keep it a secret--or even that he ''wanted'' to keep it a secret, long-term--and the film shows that anyone ''really'' interested in the Rocketeer's identity discovers it pretty quickly. In fact, when Cliff tells Jenny his big secret--that he's the Rocketeer--Jenny just says, "The Rock-a-''who?''"
* ShoutOut: Cliff never flies without some Beeman's Gum, just like ChuckYeager in ''TheRightStuff''.
** It's also TruthInTelevision, as Beeman's was long considered the lucky gum of pilots.
* SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan: Jenny is briefly dazzled by Neville's charm and star power, but quickly returns to her long-term boyfriend because he loves and respects her.
** And because Neville keeps trying to court her by quoting lines from his own movies. And then there's [[spoiler:the evil. Not the best dating tactic. Nor is chloroforming and kidnapping your date.]]
* SoLongSuckers: A note-perfect example, complete with one-liner and swift, ironic death.
* StillbornFranchise: There were plans for a trilogy, but they were sadly scrapped because of the lackluster box-office performance.
* StockingFiller: Jenny's first scene.
* StupidJetpackHitler: Preventing this is the story's main plot.
* ThermalDissonance: The rocketpack stays cool even after flight, [[HandWave attributed]] to a double-walled chamber and preheated fuel.
* TapOnTheHead: ''Many'' times; played with in that the victims sometimes recover faster than their assailants were planning.
* ToastedBuns: An attempt at [[{{Handwave}} handwaving]] was made, though.
* TodayXTomorrowTheWorld
* TheThirties
* TrailersAlwaysSpoil: Some people said they didn't need to see the film, the trailer told the whole story.
** [[TropesAreNotBad That doesn't make the full movie any less awesome though.]]
* TrojanHorse: The airship, ostensibly in LosAngeles for peaceful purposes.
* TwoFistedTales: The comics and movie alike were loving homages to the TwoFistedTales of the Thirties.
* TookALevelInBadass: Cliff Secord between the comic book (in which he was assisted by other pulp heroes) and the movie (which he actually saved other people, mostly by himself).
* VanillaEdition: ''Another'' of the DVD's many sins.
* VictoriasSecretCompartment: Where Jenny hides the rocket pack plans.
* YouKeepUsingThatWord: ''Everyone'' in the movie keeps calling it a "rocket" (Even Howard Hughes who ''built'' the damn thing) desite the fact that ''everything'' we see in the movie marks the device as a jetpack. Although this is [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], as in the Thirties the jet engine wasn't exactly commonplace.
** It's actually odder than it seems - the reason NASA has the ''Jet'' Propulsion Lab is because the word was actually used to refer to rockets as well.
*** 'Jet' refers to the stream of high-velocity gases exiting whichever device happens to be holding them. Technically, flatulence counts as a jet.
* YouMustBeCold
* ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld: Since it's only a ''slightly'' alternate version of TheThirties (see above), the Germans use a zeppelin to visit 1938 Los Angeles (when in fact airship travel ended in 1937 with the ''Hindenburg'').

to:

[[quoteright:301:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Rocketeermovieposter.jpg]]

A 1991 Disney live-action film, adapted from Dave Stevens' series of comic books, ''The Rocketeer'' follows the adventures of its titular hero: stunt pilot Cliff Secord, who uses a serendipitously found experimental rocket pack to fight crime in [[TheThirties 1938]] LosAngeles.

Anticipating by a dozen years the trend towards more naturalistic (as opposed to heavily stylized, e.g. ''Film/DickTracy'') film adaptations of comic books, ''The Rocketeer'' is, if not an exceptional movie, still an underrated and unexpectedly strong one. Perhaps this is due to solid casting choices (Alan Arkin, as Cliff's mentor, has most of the best lines, and delivers them with terrific understated dryness), perhaps due to its lovely Art Deco art design, or perhaps due to an exceptionally butt-kicking score by James Horner. It is a "family movie" in the best sense of the term.

It was nominated for a Hugo in 1992, but lost to ''{{Terminator}} 2: Judgment Day''.

----
!!Provides examples of:
* AccentRelapse: [[spoiler:Neville Sinclair switches from a British accent to a German accent after he is unmasked as a Nazi spy. In case the heroes were to ''forget'' he was evil...?]]
* AcePilot: played straight with Cliff, a stunt pilot; subverted with Malcolm, allegedly a WorldWarOne ace, but now in his dotage.
* AllPartOfTheShow: Said word for word when the Rocketeer first appears, and saves bumbling pilot Malcolm from fiery death. However, the airfield owner saying that has a hard time keeping up that line as the crashing plane destroys ''another'' of his fuel trucks.
* AlternateHistory / AlternateUniverse: But only ''slightly'' so. Everything's mostly the same as it was in our 1938, except Howard Hughes has invented a jetpack, the Germans still use zeppelins, and the Hollywoodland sign ends up losing the "-land" eleven years early.
* AluminumChristmasTrees: Believe it or not, ridiculously-shaped buildings like the Bulldog Cafe really ''did'' exist; they were something of a fad in midcentury LosAngeles. Perhaps the most famous is the Brown Derby restaurant, a stars' hangout in old-time Hollywood and the place where the Cobb salad was invented. Since they were built for novelty, not durability, most are gone--but a handful survive, most notably [[http://randys-donuts.com/frame.html Randy's Donuts]] of Inglewood, which is shaped like a giant donut.
-->'''NickFury''': ''[[{{Film/IronMan}} Sir, I'm gonna have to ask you to exit the donut!]]''
* AreWeGettingThis: At the airshow.
* [[AscendedFanboy Ascended Fangirl]]: Jenny, until she realizes Neville is a creep. [[spoiler: And a Nazi spy.]]
* BigDamnHeroes: Cliff, Jennifer and the gangsters are all held at gunpoint by Nazi paratroopers, about to be mowed down at Sinclair's order. Suddenly, headlights light up and armed men appear with tommy guns while their leader roars, "This is the '''FBI'''! Throw down your guns!"
** Then, later on, Howard Hughes and Peevy show up in an autogyro and rescue Cliff and Jenny from the exploding zeppelin.
* BilingualBonus: The German is left untranslated, though they got one bit of German wrong. At one point, the Nazi G-Man says "Ich habe meine Bestellung", which means "I have my orders", but "Bestellung" actually refers to the type of orders you'd give a waiter. He should've said "Befehle".
* BookcasePassage: In Neville Sinclair's mansion.
* BruceWayneHeldHostage: Valentine's mooks keep the airshow pilots--Cliff included--hostage at the cafe.
* TheBrute: Lothar.
* TheCasanova: Subverted; Neville tries to seduce Jenny, but his chat-up lines are all from his own movies which Jenny (as an avid fan) knows off by heart.
** The BookcasePassage to [[spoiler: Neville's Nazi communications room]] was even opened by a book called "The Conquests of Casanova".
* ChekhovsGun: The Nazi airship is briefly mentioned in a newsreel the characters watch at the opening of the film. You've probably forgotten all about it until it [[OhCrap suddenly shows up overhead]] at the climax.
** The bullet hole in the rocket pack.
** Cliff's habit of chewing gum, which saves his life covering the bullet hole on the rocket pack [[spoiler: and dooms Neville Sinclair's when Cliff slides it off.]] So would this be [[IncrediblyLamePun Chekhov's gum?]]
* ClimbingClimax
* CoolOldGuy: Peevy.
* CoolPlane: Actual flying GeeBee racer replicas
* CreatorCameo: Blink and you'll miss him, but that's ''Rocketeer'' creator Dave Stevens playing the test pilot in the German film Howard Hughes shows Cliff.
* DamselInDistress: Subverted, somewhat, as Jenny does participate in her own rescue.
* DanceOfRomance: Neville Sinclair attempts to invoke this in his seduction of Jenny at the South Seas Club. It doesn't stick.
* TheDanza: JenniferConnelly as Jenny.
* DeathFromAbove: The airship.
* DeepCoverAgent: [[spoiler:Neville Sinclair.]]
* DieselPunk: The art direction has a lovely Deco Punk look.
* DisneyVillainDeath: A variation: [[spoiler:Sinclair voluntarily flies out of the zeppelin with the rocketpack, but its fuel leak causes it to burst into a massive fireball, causing Neville to crash into the Hollywoodland sign and explode spectacularly]].
* DisposablePilot: As Neville Sinclair is making his escape aboard a Nazi zeppelin, the captain tells Sinclair that their pilot is the best in Germany, when Lothar's unconscious body knocks the pilot out of the zeppelin.
* EnemyMine: [[spoiler:During a gunfight in the climax, Valentine finds himself fighting the Nazis alongside the police chief. They glance at each other, and then resume firing.]]
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Eddie Valentine [[spoiler:quits working for Sinclair after finding out he's a Nazi.]]
-->'''Valentine:''' [[spoiler:[[CrowningMomentOfAwesome Now I may not make an honest buck, but I'm 100% American.]]]]
** [[spoiler:Almost TruthInTelevision as a lot of RealLife American gangsters during that era weren't too thrilled with fascism, especially because Mussolini persecuted the Sicilian Families back in the Old Country. And Hitler wasn't a favorite of the Jewish mobsters either.]]
* {{Expy}}: Lothar is Rondo Hatton, while Neville Sinclair is Errol Flynn, [[spoiler:who was (wrongly) accused of being a Nazi spy.]]
** From the original comics, Jenny is supposed to be Betty Page. That didn't apparently translate to the film...
* ExtraExtraReadAllAboutIt
* FanService: JenniferConnelly, as she puts on a stocking; her cleavage in the latter parts of the movie. Or basically, just Jennifer Connelly. [[http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSFU3L4mrxEtzc400R1q8mbRAhFmltOuhuZh_xuPMcjLdVlbHZxUw 20-year-old Jennifer Connelly]]. Wow.
* FloatingHeadSyndrome: One of the DVD release's many sins. The Blu-Ray release, too. All this despite the beautiful Art Deco poster (see page image)... it is to weep.
* GeorgeLucasThrowback: To the adventure serials of the 1930s. See also TwoFistedTales.
* GiantMook: Lothar.
* GlamorousWartimeSinger: At the South Seas Club.
* GoSeduceMyArchnemesis
* GreasySpoon: The Bulldog Cafe.
* GroinAttack: Cliff tries this against Lothar aboard the zeppelin, though it only annoys Lothar, and worse, Cliff gets hurt trying it.
* {{Handwave}}: The reason the jetpack's operator's legs don't get fried to a crisp by the exhaust is that it's a "cool" propulsion powered by alcohol.
* HelloAgainOfficer: Cliff keeps running into the same three feds...
* HistoricalDomainCharacter: Howard Hughes.
* HistoricalInJoke:
** Cliff escapes from Howard Hughes by grabbing a (large) model plane and jumping off a balcony, gliding to safety. The plane is a model of the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spruce_goose "Spruce Goose"]], and Hughes comments, "The son-of-a-bitch ''will'' fly."
** LosAngeles' famous "Hollywood" sign used to read "Hollywoodland". [[spoiler:Neville Sinclair makes a dramatic exit from the burning airship (see SoLongSuckers, below), right after he smirks "I'll ''miss'' Hollywood..." He then crashes into the last four letters of the sign, obliterating them. (In reality, the "-land" was removed in 1949, to reduce maintenance costs.)]]
** The newsreel shows that the first place to be visited by the German zeppelin is [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hindenburg_disaster Lakehurst]].
* [[IHaveYourWife I Have Your Girl]] / ComeAlone: Cliff is summoned to the Griffith Park Observatory. Hey, it was 1938; these tropes were NEW!
* JetPack
** Plus the plot consists of thwarting StupidJetpackHitler
* LethallyExpensive: When Howard Hughes shows Cliff the Nazi propaganda film, he says "Keep watching, kid. It cost a man's life to get this out of Germany."
* LineOfSightName: After such false starts as "Rocketman" and "Rocketboy", Bigelow coins "Rocket''eer''" after seeing the word "Pioneer".
* LookMaNoPlane
* MaleGaze: When Jenny is introduced to famed comedian W.C. Fields, the camera shows us exactly why he is "Charmed. '''Doubly''' charmed" to meet her.
* MatchCut: Hills to a close-up of bedsheets; a flaming airship to a bunch of oranges.
* MentorOccupationalHazard: {{Averted}}--Peevy makes it to the end.
* MiddleManagementMook: Eddie Valentine
* MookFaceTurn: [[spoiler:Eddie Valentine, because working for a Nazi is [[NotWhatISignedOnFor not what he signed on for.]]]]
* MrFixit: Peevy
* MsFanservice: JenniferConnelly at her peak.
* NaziGermany: As the BigBad.
* NeedleInAStackOfNeedles: When Cliff arrives at the South Seas Club, he hides the rocket and helmet in a laundry bag in the laundry room. When he returns, he finds the room full of a dozen more bags.
* {{Newsreel}}
* NonindicativeName: In fact, everyone keeps calling the device in question "The Rocket" when everything that's shown tells us it's basically a jet engine.
** Completely justified by the fact that in 1938 "jet engine" was something that only few people were aware of and even fewer could have recognized one.
* NoPlansNoPrototypeNoBackup: Averted. The rocket pack we see ''is'' the protoype; Howard Hughes ''burns'' the plans ten minutes in, but Peevy draws new ones, with plans to build an improved version.
* NotWearingTights
* NotWhatISignedOnFor: Valentine.
* OperaGloves: Jenny
* ParrotExpowhat: "The Rock-a-''who?''"
* PoliceAreUseless: Until the end.
* TheQuisling: [[spoiler: Neville Sinclair.]]
* RecycledTrailerMusic: This movie may not be very well-remembered, but unless you haven't been to a movie theater since 1991, you absolutely have heard this score used in trailers for [[strike:dozens]] hundreds of other movies. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HzNhQefDvH0 Have a listen.]]
* RomanceOnTheSet: Lead actors Bill Campbell and JenniferConnelly had a romance leading to a lengthy engagement, though they eventually called it off.
* SecretIdentity: Toyed with. The movie's compressed timescale (it takes place over three days) means that, over the course of the movie, Cliff's identity is a secret only in that it hasn't been publicly revealed, and not a lot of people have heard of the Rocketeer. There's no indication that he was trying particularly hard to keep it a secret--or even that he ''wanted'' to keep it a secret, long-term--and the film shows that anyone ''really'' interested in the Rocketeer's identity discovers it pretty quickly. In fact, when Cliff tells Jenny his big secret--that he's the Rocketeer--Jenny just says, "The Rock-a-''who?''"
* ShoutOut: Cliff never flies without some Beeman's Gum, just like ChuckYeager in ''TheRightStuff''.
** It's also TruthInTelevision, as Beeman's was long considered the lucky gum of pilots.
* SingleWomanSeeksGoodMan: Jenny is briefly dazzled by Neville's charm and star power, but quickly returns to her long-term boyfriend because he loves and respects her.
** And because Neville keeps trying to court her by quoting lines from his own movies. And then there's [[spoiler:the evil. Not the best dating tactic. Nor is chloroforming and kidnapping your date.]]
* SoLongSuckers: A note-perfect example, complete with one-liner and swift, ironic death.
* StillbornFranchise: There were plans for a trilogy, but they were sadly scrapped because of the lackluster box-office performance.
* StockingFiller: Jenny's first scene.
* StupidJetpackHitler: Preventing this is the story's main plot.
* ThermalDissonance: The rocketpack stays cool even after flight, [[HandWave attributed]] to a double-walled chamber and preheated fuel.
* TapOnTheHead: ''Many'' times; played with in that the victims sometimes recover faster than their assailants were planning.
* ToastedBuns: An attempt at [[{{Handwave}} handwaving]] was made, though.
* TodayXTomorrowTheWorld
* TheThirties
* TrailersAlwaysSpoil: Some people said they didn't need to see the film, the trailer told the whole story.
** [[TropesAreNotBad That doesn't make the full movie any less awesome though.]]
* TrojanHorse: The airship, ostensibly in LosAngeles for peaceful purposes.
* TwoFistedTales: The comics and movie alike were loving homages to the TwoFistedTales of the Thirties.
* TookALevelInBadass: Cliff Secord between the comic book (in which he was assisted by other pulp heroes) and the movie (which he actually saved other people, mostly by himself).
* VanillaEdition: ''Another'' of the DVD's many sins.
* VictoriasSecretCompartment: Where Jenny hides the rocket pack plans.
* YouKeepUsingThatWord: ''Everyone'' in the movie keeps calling it a "rocket" (Even Howard Hughes who ''built'' the damn thing) desite the fact that ''everything'' we see in the movie marks the device as a jetpack. Although this is [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], as in the Thirties the jet engine wasn't exactly commonplace.
** It's actually odder than it seems - the reason NASA has the ''Jet'' Propulsion Lab is because the word was actually used to refer to rockets as well.
*** 'Jet' refers to the stream of high-velocity gases exiting whichever device happens to be holding them. Technically, flatulence counts as a jet.
* YouMustBeCold
* ZeppelinsFromAnotherWorld: Since it's only a ''slightly'' alternate version of TheThirties (see above), the Germans use a zeppelin to visit 1938 Los Angeles (when in fact airship travel ended in 1937 with the ''Hindenburg'').
[[redirect:Film/TheRocketeer]]
22nd Nov '11 6:32:52 AM kchishol
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* AllPartOfTheShow: Said word for word when the Rocketeer first appears, and saves bumbling pilot Malcolm from fiery death.

to:

* AllPartOfTheShow: Said word for word when the Rocketeer first appears, and saves bumbling pilot Malcolm from fiery death. However, the airfield owner saying that has a hard time keeping up that line as the crashing plane destroys ''another'' of his fuel trucks.
21st Nov '11 8:17:42 PM DynamiteXI
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

** Then, later on, Howard Hughes and Peevy show up in an autogyro and rescue Cliff and Jenny from the exploding zeppelin.
21st Nov '11 5:22:24 PM Premonition45
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* BigDamnHeroes: Cliff, Jennifer and The Gangsters are all held at gunpoint by Nazi paratroopers, about to be mowed down at Sinclair's order. Suddenly, headlights light up and armed men appear with tommyguns while their leader roars, "Hold it, this is the '''FBI'''!"

to:

* BigDamnHeroes: Cliff, Jennifer and The Gangsters the gangsters are all held at gunpoint by Nazi paratroopers, about to be mowed down at Sinclair's order. Suddenly, headlights light up and armed men appear with tommyguns tommy guns while their leader roars, "Hold it, this "This is the '''FBI'''!" '''FBI'''! Throw down your guns!"



** The bullet hole in the jet pack.

to:

** The bullet hole in the jet pack.rocket pack.
** Cliff's habit of chewing gum, which saves his life covering the bullet hole on the rocket pack [[spoiler: and dooms Neville Sinclair's when Cliff slides it off.]] So would this be [[IncrediblyLamePun Chekhov's gum?]]
21st Nov '11 10:52:22 AM kchishol
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* BigDamnHeroes: Cliff, Jennifer and The Gangsters are all held at gunpoint by Nazi paratroopers, about to be mowed down at Sinclair's order. Suddenly, headlights light up and armed men appear with tommyguns while their leader roars, "Hold it, this is the '''FBI'''!"
17th Nov '11 3:46:03 PM Premonition45
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* GroinAttack: Cliff tries this against Lothar aboard the zeppelin, though it only annoys Lothar, and worse, Cliff gets hurt trying it.
17th Nov '11 2:18:18 PM SirSapphire
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* YouKeepUsingThatWord: ''Everyone'' in the movie keeps calling it a "rocket" (Even Howard Hughes who ''built'' the damn thing) desite the fact that ''everything'' we see in the movie marks the devise as a jetpack. Although this is [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], as in the Thirties the jet engine wasn't exactly commonplace.

to:

* YouKeepUsingThatWord: ''Everyone'' in the movie keeps calling it a "rocket" (Even Howard Hughes who ''built'' the damn thing) desite the fact that ''everything'' we see in the movie marks the devise device as a jetpack. Although this is [[JustifiedTrope Justified]], as in the Thirties the jet engine wasn't exactly commonplace.
12th Nov '11 7:02:54 PM Premonition45
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* BilingualBonus: The German is left untranslated, though they got one bit of German wrong. At one point, the Nazi G-Man says "Ich habe mein Bestellung", which means "I have my orders", but "Bestellung" actually refers to the type of orders you'd give a waiter. He should've said "Befehle". In addition, the correct conjugation would be "meine" in either case.

to:

* BilingualBonus: The German is left untranslated, though they got one bit of German wrong. At one point, the Nazi G-Man says "Ich habe mein meine Bestellung", which means "I have my orders", but "Bestellung" actually refers to the type of orders you'd give a waiter. He should've said "Befehle". In addition, the correct conjugation would be "meine" in either case.
8th Nov '11 3:56:44 AM JustKnown
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* CoolPlane: Actual flying GeeBee racer replicas
This list shows the last 10 events of 87. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.TheRocketeer