Technical troubles scuttle the Apollo 13 mission in 1970, risking the lives of astronaut Jim Lovell and his crew in this chronicle of a true story.
Runtime: 2hr 19m
Director: Ron Howard
Starring: Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, Bill Paxton, Gary Sinise, Ed Harris, Kathleen Quinlan, David Andrews, Xander Berkeley, Christian Clemenson, Brett Cullen, Loren Dean, Clint Howard, Ben Marley, Marc McClure, Tracy Reiner, Joe Spano
Information Page: https://www.newonnetflix.info/info/262866
I have lost count how many times I have watched Apollo 13, and I still think it is a superb recreation of a true story. They use Jim Lovell’s book “Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13” as their main point of reference. The film tells the story of the Apollo 13 space mission, which goes dramatically wrong whilst making it’s way to the moon. The team at NASA mission control must work with the astronauts to bring them safely home, whilst resources are dwindling and makeshift DIY has to take place in space.
Apollo 13 uses really amazing cinematography effects that have stood the test of time, and although they may not look as good as the effects in more modern films, they are still awe inspiring. The scenes inside the Saturn V are so well executed that it makes you feel as though you’re the fourth astronaut on the mission. In many ways this film conveys what it was like onboard an Apollo spacecraft. The liftoff is breathtaking, with multiple views of the size and grandeur of the Saturn V rocket. Inside the spacecraft you see the benefits (and drawbacks) of weightlessness. There’s even a simulator in which the astronauts train for manoeuvres they must perform during the mission. The movie is almost a “behind-the-scenes” look at the NASA space program in the 1960’s and 1970’s, giving all those not present at the time an idea of what it must have been like.
The cast works really well together and they have been cast so perfectly that it feels like the parts have been created for them. Tom Hanks as Commander Jim Lovell, an experienced space voyager who wishes to land on the moon is really believable and you can see the anguish in his face when he realises that he may not see his family again. Fred Haise played by Bill Paxton plays the part of unwell, angry friend in truly believable fashion. Kevin Bacon really brings to life the excitement of standby astronaut Jack Swigert but also portrays his worry when things don’t go as planned. My favourite performance by far though is Gary Sinise as astronaut Ken Mattingly, who plays happy, disappointed, and determined in a very believable way.
Apollo 13 is not an action film by any stretch of the imagination, it is a slow suspenseful film where even in scenes where there is a lot happening it is done in a controlled calm manner. Whilst this is a very endearing aspect of the film it can also make it hard to follow the timeframe of the events, such as how many days they have spent in space before the accident and then how long they have to spend in the LEM (Lunar Excursion Module).
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