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In the Shadow of the Moon (PG)





Release Date: September 7th, 2007 (Landmark Sunshine Cinemas and Loews Lincoln Square) by THINKFilm.
Directed by David Sington.

BASIC PREMISE: A documentary about the experiences of the surviving crew members from NASAís Apollo space missions.

ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Between 1968 and 1972, NASA sent 9 spacecrafts on missions to the moon and a total of 12 astronauts landed on it. In the Shadow of the Moon captures the amazing experiences of the 8 surviving astronauts through fascinating, lively interviews. A brief history of space exploration starting form the Kennedy administration in 1961 provides a helpful introduction to the forthcoming adventures. Each astronaut has a story to tell which he describes in such vivid details, itís as if he were just on the moon yesterday. Most notably is astronaut Mike Collins, who gives a humorous account to his experiences. Buzz Aldrin claims that he took a leak in his suit while on the moon. Unfortunately, there arenít any interviews with the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong, although his colleagues reminisce about how powerful his famous statement (ďOne small step for man, one giant step for mankind.Ē) was. Director David Sington does a terrific job of humanizing the astronauts by letting them speak directly to the camera and having them recall their thoughts and feelings that they had before, during and after the missions. He also recovers and re-masters some unseen footage from NASA. The documentary loses focus and becomes a bit preachy toward the end with the seemingly tacked-on inclusion of the global warming issue, which belongs in a different documentary. Fortunately, the exquisite cinematography and crisp visuals in high-definition look breathtaking and help to make you feel as exhilarated and excited as the astronauts were during their mission.

SPIRITUAL VALUE: Itís quite moving and uplifting how the astronautís missions changed the way they looked at Earth and humanity. Their experiences allowed them to appreciate everything on planet Earth and to recognize its inherent beauty, even in the small things in life which can often be taken for granted.

INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None.

NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 0

IN A NUTSHELL: Exhilarating, engrossing and uplifting.

RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: Movie Theater


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