In youth adventure ROCCA CHANGES THE WORLD A bright eleven-year-old with a sunny disposition and lots of good ideas takes up the fight against the injustices of everyday life. We’ll reveal how she does it in our review.
The Plot Summary
“My parents are in heaven,” laughs eleven-year-old Rocca (Luna Maxeiner) when asked by her astonished headmaster (Andreas Maertens) and is doubly right. Unfortunately, her mother died when she was born, while her father (Volker Bruch) is currently an astronaut on the International Space Station (ISS). Rocca grew up with her father, who worked for the European Space Agency (ESA), at the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Now that he’s on a mission in space, Rocca has to go to Hamburg to temporarily live with her grandma Dodo (Barbara Sukowa). But as soon as they arrive, the human whirlwind causes great chaos. Not only does the grandmother have to go to the hospital because of her and an overly bold squirrel – which of course brings the youth welfare office into action. Rocca also causes a lot of excitement at her new school. And then there is the homeless Casper (Fahri Yardim), whose life threatens to get thrown further off track thanks to her before it can finally get back on the right track…
Movie explanation of the ending
The film begins with the title heroine, who makes an emergency landing of a huge airliner at Hamburg airport and then leaves the field on her skateboard before the security forces and sensationalist journalists can arrive. This scenario is probably bordering on believable even for young moviegoers. If we get to know the girl a little better in the following 100 minutes, we realize that such actions are nothing special for the modern version of Pippi Longstocking. In any case, the little one is rather stubborn. For them it doesn’t matter whether someone wears trendy clothes, how popular he or she is or how much money you have. If someone needs help, the aspiring spaceship pilot is there – no strings attached. She doesn’t worry or even fear about herself or her current situation. Because – as Rocca cleverly points out – that wouldn’t help anyway, right?
What’s next for Rocca’s (Luna Maxeiner) future?
Luna Maxeiner is a stroke of luck for the production and for the audience. The talented newcomer – so far she has only appeared in three episodes of the TV series “Club of the Red Ribbons” – plays her role wonderfully authentically and committedly as a likeable, open, intelligent, considerate and empathetic being with minimal tolerance for injustice of any kind. Where others see a problem, she sees a solution. This may seem a bit naive to the larger audience, as was the case with the homelessness situation in Hamburg, but it shows the children in the audience that grievances that seem entrenched can definitely be improved through empathy, ingenuity and moral courage. As for the bullying in Rocca’s class, the script (Hilly Martinek, “Honey in the head”) there is even an absolutely plausible way for them to end this that is respectful to everyone involved. The protagonist in the turquoise overall is a great role model for children. And not just for girls.
In 2018, director Katja Benrath was nominated for an Oscar for her short film drama “Watu Wote: All Of Us”. Based on her first feature film, “Rocca Changes the World,” she now proves that she moves confidently when it comes to the subject of a feature film. Benrath has created an all-round positive, optimistic and extremely entertaining youth film, even for parents or older siblings. Its greatest asset is of course its self-confident and refreshingly cheeky star. But the rest of the cast, with well-known faces like Barbara Sukowa (“The Lost World”)Detlev Buck (“Magical Mystery”)Cordula Stratmann (“Sweethearts”)Mina Tander (“Change of page”) and the always amusing Michael Maertens (“Bibi & Tina – Fully Bewitched”), alongside a series of kids doing their job admirably well, also provides the best family entertainment. This is guaranteed to be a topic of conversation after the credits roll and ideally help to make young (maybe older?) film fans more considerate, tolerant and courageous people. As a small bonus, it should be noted: the film city of Hamburg has rarely been presented in a more magical, sunny and attractive way than it is here.
Rocca meets the homeless Casper (Fahri Yardim).
Conclusion: A funny, exciting and turbulent youth film that is not only fun, but also makes you think. With the lovable title character, kids of both genders get a great role model.
“Rocca Changes the World” can be seen in USA cinemas nationwide from March 14th.