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The Rocket Post (2006)   rating

Review: written 2008

Sweet and nostalgic

 The Rocket Post (2006)

An undemanding movie which is nonetheless intelligently put together, this ranks below `Local Hero' and some way better than `The Englishman who walked up a mountain..', while having similarities to each.

When a German scientist (Gerhard Zucher) and his colleague in 1938 are sent to the Isle of Scapa in the Hebrides to test out their burgeoning rocket technology, sending post from the island to the mainland, they at first encounter distrust from the locals. However, a romance blossoms between the scientist and a local beauty and the islanders start to mellow... just as Germany and others start to take an interest which will culminate in difficult choices.

The stunning Hebridean scenery is breathtaking, and acting (and accents) good enough to let yourself be carried away with what would seem to be a pleasant piece of whimsy, were it not actually (loosely) based on fact. The humour occasionally misfires when leaning towards slapstick, but otherwise sticks to safe territory which works well. As the film veers to melodrama, the change in tone actually brings out the best in the actors and prevents the movie from having too sweet an aftertaste.

On the acting front there are no complaints, and a few decent cameos accentuate the fine central characters. In particular, Kevin McKidd makes a memorable Glaswegian poacher, who becomes an unlikely ally for the scientists as they find their way in the community.

All in all, a harmless movie, and for those wanting an evening of undemanding entertainment in the romantic / melodrama department with fine scenery, this should fit the bill.

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