I have never really known that much about the true story that lead to landing on the moon. Other than the names Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin being cemented in my brain from a young age. This fascinating drama tells the story from the perspective of Armstrong (Ryan Gosling) offering a very personal angle, focusing on his own tragedies and his relationship with his wife (The Crown’s Clare Foy), with the Astronort mission(s) almost background.
Considering the aim of landing on the moon became an egotistical race against Russia to be the first, I was surprised with the lack of that usual American patriotism and vitriol, especially in the final act, leading to a rather downer ending. Also the eventual moon landing is a bit under-played, fitting with the more sombre tone of the rest of the movie – but by that moment it should have felt epic.
Gosling is great, one his best performances I’d say and carries the movie well. Foy doesn’t fair quite as well, awkwardly trying to shake her Queen Elizabeth accent for an upper class American one. Also considering his status in history, Buzz Aldrin is simply ‘there’ with very little focus. The movie kind of portrays the man as a bit of a joke too. Yet the impending dread of each mission, the clear insane danger of it all, and the attention to authentic detail has to be applauded. Worth a watch but not quite all it could have been.
Following up what was one of the most gripping and rewarding sci-fi movies in years in the shape of the award winning Moon, director Duncan Jones had a lot of expectation weighing heavy on his shoulders. Starring one of my favourite actors, Jake Gyllenhaal as Captain Colter Stevens (great movie name there!) who finds himself on a train that’s about to fall victim to a terrorist bomb threat. Given only eight minutes to discover what happens before his conciousness is transported back to the military facility housing a top-secret project called The Source Code, Captian Stevens must continually, groundhog day-like revisit the train and identify the culprit to prevent any further devesation.
I hadn’t heard much about this one, apart from mild rumblings of that it was good. Yet after watching a You Tube review recently, it made me want to take a gamble and buy it – and hey, I’m a sucka for a good sci-fi movie! Well, this one tells the simple story of an astronaut (Sam Rockwell) due to complete his three year mission on the moon, mining the planet for valuable minerals and generally reporting back to earth via computer communication. His only company is a computer called Gerty (voiced by Kevin Spacey). He sends and receives messages to his wife and young daughter, but suffers from loneliness and isolation that bring on hallucinations.
This incredibly effective movie has a strong central performance from Rockwell in a very demanding role and is shot with plenty of style and atmosphere but never feels like something out of a comic book. As events transpire the movie opens up and reveals itself and I was left very impressed by the basic idea and imagination, and above all else, the genuine emotion on display. This is probably a movie you will easily pass by, but I recommend you take a look, as it offers more than you might expect.
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