Once in a while you see a film that reminds you just how great storytelling can be. This is one of those moments.
Set in war-scarred Loas, we follow young Ahlo and his family. They are a people steeped in tribal traditions struggling to keep their old ways of life after being displaced due to ‘progress’.
Unknown to Ahlo at first, he was born one of a twin (his brother was dead at birth and quickly hidden). The tribe culture believes twins carry bad luck: “One is cursed, one is blessed”. Yet the persistence of his mother ensures he was not discarded as tradition dictates.
Upon later discovering his curse, Ahlo decides to build a rocket and enter a famous rocket competition to bring his family luck and win a new home.
It sounds simple…and it is! Simple but beautiful.
Written and directed by relative new-comer Kim Mordaunt, and starring a fresh cast (most of whom have never been in a film before), this is one impressive little gem. It reminds me that movies don’t need all the bells and whistles; Just because it is a visually driven medium, does not mean the visuals are the ‘be all and end all’. Film making is, ultimately, story telling.
Technically, THE ROCKET does not push any boundaries; it’s not doing anything new. It is the subtle yet superb performances, and the simple but wonderful story that is the star of this movie. It’s akin to snuggling under your blanket at night and listening to your mother read you a great bed time story: it’s got that same warmth and heart.
You know a film has touched it’s audience when they clap at the end… THE ROCKET got a big clap. Yes it’s got subtitles, but man up: you can handle it. Give your heart a warm and fuzzy present – go see this film.
I rate it 7 stars.