The Rocketeer: 20th Anniversary Blu-Ray Review

the rocketeer blu-ray review

I believe the last time I saw “The Rocketeer” was when I was around 10 or 11 and to be honest I couldn’t remember much of the movie other than it was about a man with a jet pack. Upon viewing it again this week I found that I remembered more than I thought and, like “The Goonies”, this movie is still extremely entertaining today.

“The Rocketeer” is directed by Joe Johnston, who recently directed “Captain America: The First Avenger”, and stars Billy Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Alan Arkin, Timothy Dalton, Paul Sorvino and Terry O’Quinn, back when he had hair and wasn’t trying to escape the island. The movie follows Cliff (Campbell) as a pilot who happens upon a secret, military developed, jet pack after it is stolen from Howard Hughes (O’Quinn) by a gang that is unknowingly working for the Nazis. Upon discovering the jet pack Cliff has now become wanted by the gang, led by Paul Sorvino, as well as the Nazis, which leads to a thrilling ride through the skies.

The movie is based on a comic book which might explain why Joe Johnston was approached to direct “Captain America” and it’s actually a quite good comic book movie. It has everything that you would expect, the origin of how he became The Rocketeer, his attempts at trying to harness the power of the jet pack, the villain that wants to steal the power away from him, the girl (who was looking mighty good I must say) and the idea that there could be a sequel or that The Rocketeer could have many more adventures in the future. And not to mention, it was just a plain good movie.

The movie itself still holds up today in my opinion and I had a great time watching it. I can’t chalk this one up to nostalgia, like “The Goonies”, as I don’t really remember a whole lot about the movie from when I saw it as a kid. The only thing I was a little disappointed with, in terms of this blu-ray, was the lack of anything other than the movie on the disc. You would think a “20th Anniversary Edition” would have something to make it a little special, but it doesn’t.


The video on the blu-ray is presented in 2.35:1 1080P and the transfer looks great. I didn’t notice any sort of artifacts and the colors were great. The movie takes place in the 1930’s so the color palette is a lot softer than we’re used to seeing these days, not to mention the movie was made 20 years ago, but the picture itself is crystal clear.


The audio is presented in DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 and sounds as good as the picture looks. There were noticeable issues with the sound and the mixing seemed spot on.

Special Features

This is where I was extremely disappointed, there are pretty much no special features on the disc. You do get the original trailer, but in my eyes that’s not a special feature as I can probably find it on YouTube right now if I wanted. The fact that this is advertised as the “20th Anniversary Edition” lead me to believe that there would be some cool special features that we hadn’t seen before that would make this worth buying, but sadly there is not. That’s not to say this isn’t worth buying if you’re a fan of the movie as it looks and sounds great, I just wish there were a few extras to round out the disc.

the rocketeer blu-ray review