Rocket Gibraltar

Watch Rocket Gibraltar

"One unforgettable weekend, one family met some remarkable, crazy, loving people. Each other."
  • PG
  • 1988
  • 1 hr 39 min
  • 6.6  (2,143)

Rocket Gibraltar is a heartwarming drama movie from 1988 starring Burt Lancaster, Suzy Amis, Patricia Clarkson, and Macaulay Culkin in his film debut as a child actor. The film follows retired professor Levi Rockwell (Burt Lancaster) who is celebrating his 77th birthday with his large family in his seaside home, Gibraltar. Although never leaving school, Levi still possesses a sharp mind, quick wit, and fondness for his grandkids. He spends his days taking care of his land, writing poetry, and sharing countless memorable moments with his six unique children and grandchildren.

However, unbeknownst to them, Levi has been diagnosed with a terminal illness, and he makes the decision to spend what little time he has left living on his own terms. He invites all of his family to Gibraltar and announces his intention to commit suicide at nightfall on his 77th birthday, choosing the location overlooking the ocean as his final resting place.

A majority of the film revolves around the reactions of his children and grandchildren to the news. They all have different ways of dealing with the news and are devastated when they learn about his decision. Elder children, Crow (Frances Conroy) and Hawk (Sinead Cusack), are the ones who fear for their father's life more than anyone else, and try to thwart Levi's plan. Hawk even reaches out to her ex-husband (Kevin Spacey) to help stop her father.

His youngest son, Rolo (Macaulay Culkin), is the most anguished by the prospect of his grandfather's death. He thinks up last-minute saving plans to change his grandfather's mind alongside his cousin, Dawn (Angela Goethals), who are both too young to comprehend death. Meanwhile, his sister Rose (Suzy Amis) is struggling to keep her married life on track and is using the family's pain to escape from her issues, while their brother, Ruby (Bill Pullman), is avoiding facing the situation by getting lost in his work.

As the night progresses and the family prepares for its final goodbye, the film takes a bittersweet turn. The family bond together, and the moments they share become more joyous and more profound. They share bittersweet memories, read poems, laugh, and cry together, all while reflecting on the lessons learned from their father/grandfather. The climax shows the family reuniting to say goodbye to Levi in a moving, poetic sequence that shows his love for his family and reveals his deep conviction in facing death on his terms.

Rocket Gibraltar is a touching examination of life and death, how people respond and cope with loss or the imminent threat of it. It explores the themes of family, love, mortality, and what it means to live life on one's terms. The movie offers a poignant portrayal of a close-knit family that must learn to accept the inevitable while cherishing the precious moments they have left. It showcases the range of emotions that run rampant as loved ones face the end of a life, such as denial, anger, fear, or acceptance.

The film's cast is exceptionally well-directed, and each actor delivers a powerful performance. Burt Lancaster, who plays the family patriarch, delivers a restrained and poignant portrayal of a man who has made peace with death. Suzy Amis brings a lovely wistfulness and yearning to her role of the daughter who is trying to keep her marriage together. Patricia Clarkson's dynamic portrayal as Crow, wife of a stockbroker, fearfully trying to hold the family together is commendable. Bill Pullman does an amazing job as the workaholic son who is trying to cope through work while Sinead Cusack as Hawk accompanied by Kevin Spacey, brings a measured restraint to her role as the elder sister trying to save her father.

In conclusion, Rocket Gibraltar is a moving and life-affirming film filled with beautiful, quiet moments that have the power to touch and heal. It is a must-watch for anyone who wants to understand how life and death shape human existence, and how love and family bond together in times of adversity. Rocket Gibraltar is a unique masterpiece that reminds us all that life is precious and that we should make the most of it before we say our final goodbye.

Rocket Gibraltar is a 1988 drama with a runtime of 1 hour and 39 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.6.

Rocket Gibraltar
Where to Watch Rocket Gibraltar
Rocket Gibraltar is available to watch free on Tubi TV. It's also available to stream, download and buy on demand at Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play, YouTube VOD and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent Rocket Gibraltar for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 39 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.6  (2,143)