| Apollo 13 (1995) |
Apollo 13 is a wonderful movie for men. It emphasizes bravery,
intelligence, physical stamina and a determination to beat the odds.
The movie tells the true story of the harrowing 1970 moon shot. Astronauts Jack Swigert (Kevin Dillon), Fred Haise (Bill Paxton) and Jim Lovell (Tom Hanks) are on their way to the moon, scheduled to be the third manned mission to land and perform experiments. The flight is the proverbial "milk run" until the ship is almost halfway to the moon.
A mechanical failure causes an explosion on the command module ship. The oxygen tanks and batteries are damaged, and it appears that the astronauts may not make it back to Earth. What follows is a marathon session of work for the ground control crew.
Gene Kranz (Ed Harris) is the never-say-die leader of Mission Control, and under his leadership the men stay focused on each problem as it comes up. Kranz refuses to give up, and demands the best efforts of his teams to save the astronauts.
Meanwhile astronaut Ken Mattingly (Gary Sinese) spends countless hours in the command module simulator working with technicians to ensure that Apollo 13 will have enough power to return to Earth. He and the other engineers are diligent and keep an open mind about the situation. Their innovative solution to power problems is another step that helps to bring the astronauts home.
Other minor male characters are shown using quick thinking, persistence and effective improvisation to keep the astronauts alive.
There are a few female characters in the story, notably Lovell's wife (Cathleen Quinlan ). Except for a few brief scenes toward the beginning of the movie she is portrayed as very devoted, supportive and family oriented.
The astronauts themselves are given a very sympathetic portrayal. They work as a team and get past the tension and anger that flare up over the dangers they face.
The movie contains plenty of tension, technobabble and quite a few actual radio and TV broadcasts from the time. The great special effects work also adds to the overall realism of the movie.
In a nutshell, Apollo 13 is the true story of a group of smart, dedicated men who work to solve a series of seemingly impossible engineering and physical problems when a mission of science turns into a fight for survival.
Apollo 13 is highly recommended as movie for men.
- Reviewed by Dead Parrot