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Apollo 18 Review

Apollo 18 movie

 

  Apollo 18 is the latest entry into the found footage style of movies. The Apollo program began in the 1960's and was the successor to the earlier Mercury space program in the United States. Were Mercury's missions was to put an American astronaut in Earth orbit, Apollo's mission was to put American astronauts on the surface of the moon.

 

  This dream was finally achieved by Apollo 11 in 1969, when Buzz Aldrin became the first man to walk on the surface of the moon. The Apollo space program would continue until 1972, ending with Apollo 17, leaving Eugene Cernan as the last man to walk on the moon.

 

  The final three Apollo missions (Apollo 18, 19, and 20) were canceled due to budgetary constraints (Apollo 16 and 17 nearly suffered from the same fate).

 

  The film Apollo 18 seeks to reveal a secret hidden history behind the Apollo program, through the use of "found footage" of what supposedly really happened. So just why didn't we go back to the moon?

 

Apollo 18 Movie Math

Three times the astronauts with only half the runny noses.

 

  The film opens up on a Sunday afternoon barbeque with the families of the three Apollo 18 astronauts Anderson (Warren Christie), Walker (Lloyd Owen), and Grey (Ryan Robbins). The three astronauts are to conduct a secret Department of Defense mission on the moon.

 

  Anderson and Walker make a landing on the Moon with the lunar excursion module, while Grey remains in orbit around the moon in the command module. The duo sets up the equipment from the Department of Defense, but has constant issues with radio interference while on the Moon.

 

I've fallen and I can't get up

I've fallen and I can't get up.

 

  To the shock of both Anderson and Walker they find a Soviet LK (Lunnly korabl-"lunar ship") very close to their chosen landing site. To their knowledge the Soviets had never placed a cosmonaut on the moon and as they investigate further not only does the mystery begin to deepen, but they begin to wonder just why they were sent on this mission by the Department of Defense in the first place.

 

  For lovers of conspiracy theories, or those who enjoy found footage mockumentaries, Apollo 18 is for you. For the rest of us... well in all honesty... it was not a bad film. Considering the film was made on a relatively small budget of just $5,000,000 I am quite impressed with what the film makers were able to achieve.

 

Apollo 18 demotivational poster

So that's where the music videos from MTV went.

 

  There were only a few missteps along the way that kind of broke my immersion in the film. The first was the very modern scruffy look that is popular today. These do not look like the clean cut astronauts of the 1970's.

 

  The second was the way the astronauts moved around on the Moon, if you watch old NASA footage you will notice that the astronauts kind of hop and skip instead of truly walking. This is due to the fact that the Moon has 1/6th of the gravity found here on Earth.

 

  Unfortunately the biggest and most glaring mistake of the movie happens in the final few minutes. I cannot go into detail about this mistake without giving away some huge spoilers. Just ask yourself after you see the movie, how did they recover all of the footage from the mission.

 

  Overall Apollo 18 was an okay movie being neither great nor bad. I think it is one of the better found footage movies to be released (Cloverfield being the best in my opinion).

 

   I enjoyed the way they built up the suspense, and the astronauts growing sense of dread. Knowing that you are alone and yet finding evidence to the contrary is very unsettling.

 

  One of the cost saving measures they used in the movie was to intercut actual NASA footage into the film, this was done with enough care that you could believe that you were watching an actual Apollo mission.

 

Final verdict for Apollo 18 6/10 just slightly above average. This one you can wait for when it is released on DVD/Blu ray.

 

 ~Professor

 

  Everyone knows Buzz Aldrin's line "One small step for man; one giant leap for mankind." But I wanted to leave you with the words of the last man on the moon Eugene Cernan.

 

  "I'm on the surface of the moon; and as I take man's last step from the surface, back home for some time to come- but we believe not too long into the future-I'd like to just say what I believe history will record. That America's challenge of Today has forged man's Destiny of tomorrow. And, as we leave the Moon at Taurus-Litlrow, we leave as we came and, God willing, as we shall return: with peace and hope for all mankind. Godspeed the crew of Apollo 17."  Eugene Cernan 1972

 

 

 

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