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STEPHEN'S MOVIE GUIDE

In the shadow of the moon (2007)  rating

Review: written 2007

Beautiful and heartfelt

In the shadow of the moon

It makes such a refreshing change to see a documentary that is not out to make a scandal, reveal a conspiracy, or trick people into making fools of themselves.

This is a real treat, to watch a straightforward telling of the conquest of the moon, not from the technical perspective but from a very human perspective, using a combination of NASA photography, period newsreels, and most crucially, interviews with the surviving Apollo astronauts, with the exception of the notoriously reclusive Neil Armstrong.

There are no tricks being used here in the telling of the tales - just fantastic lingering shots of the moon as seen by the astronauts, and their very personal memories, told with candour and warmth. We learn how human they felt - the `right stuff' persona is taken off for a moment, and we see just how in awe they were - and still are- of what they were part of. This is all put in perspective of not just the space race of the 60's, but the Vietnam war which some felt guilty to be exempted from.

On a lighter note, we learn who was the first astronaut to pee on the moon, and the nervous moment when the moon land speed record was broken in the lunar buggy - at a breakneck speed of 18 kmh...

It's hard not to be a little moved by the stories being told, and the iconic shots of earthrise and the surface of the moon will blow you away, as the unhurried pace draws you through the events leading up to and during the landings.

Highly recommended.





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