In the Shadow of the Moon

Critics Consensus

Director David Sington poetically interwove 20th Century's cosmonautic history with its effect on the public's view of their country, their heroes and their future.



Reviews Counted: 113

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Reviews Count: 0
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Average Rating: 4.2/5

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Movie Info

Between 1968 and 1972, nine American spacecraft voyaged to the Moon, and 12 men walked upon its surface. They remain the only human beings to have stood on another world. "In the Shadow of the Moon" brings together for the first, and possibly the last, time surviving crew members from every single Apollo mission that flew to the Moon, and allows them to tell their story in their own words. This first-hand testimony is interwoven with visually stunning archival material which has been re-mastered from the original NASA film footage--much of it never used before. The result is an intimate epic that vividly communicates the daring, the danger, the pride, and the promise of this extraordinary era in history when the whole world literally looked up at America.

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Critic Reviews for In the Shadow of the Moon

All Critics (113) | Top Critics (43)

The crowd-pleaser has enough ambition to pitch a one-size-fits-all philosophy based on the Apollo crew's revelation that looking down from space, our problems seem trivial.

Feb 22, 2008 | Rating: B | Full Review…

There is something thrilling and moving in this documentary about the great era of the Nasa moon landings.

Nov 2, 2007 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

David Sington more than makes up for the straightforward nature of his film with the quality of its interviews and plenitude of staggering archive footage.

Nov 1, 2007 | Rating: 4/6 | Full Review…
Time Out
Top Critic

The movie fills us with wonder, and pride, and a tugging sense of loss.

Oct 6, 2007 | Full Review…

Successfully recaptures the feeling of what made the Apollo missions so special.

Oct 6, 2007 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

The astronaut interviews are fun and occasionally moving...

Sep 28, 2007 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for In the Shadow of the Moon


A spiritual journey about the audacity of man, the will power of man, the brilliance of man, the smallness of man. Dozens of anecdotes from the handful of aging men still alive today who landed on that terrestrial body 250,000 miles away. Hundreds of images to give a glimpse of what they experienced and its gravity on our humanity.

Matthew Slaven
Matthew Slaven

Super Reviewer


An extremely rich look on the glory of space exploration that took place in the 1960's, and the men who took part in the historic achievement of landing on the moon. This deep and fascinating documentary requires no overlooking narration, instead it puts its story in the hands of the men who flew to the moon and back, who recall their experiences and sometimes humorous experiences with genuine fondness. This is a special film, although I feel it's aimed more at the generation that grew up during this period, serving as a nice trip down memory lane. However I still very much enjoyed it and learned a lot from it. The footage captured of the moon is just downright arresting. The last five minutes or so of the film also turn out to be the most touching, as each of these men effectively show their sincere humility concerning their lives and experiences.

Dan Schultz
Dan Schultz

Super Reviewer


Functional doc on the moon landings which inevitably suffers by comparison with 'Apollo 13''s heightened emotions.

Gordon Anderson
Gordon Anderson

Super Reviewer

Michael Collins: Everywhere we went, instead of saying "you did it, you Americans did it," they were saying "we did it, we, the human race, did it," and I thought that was a wonderful thing. This movie reminded me of when I was younger and really enjoyed all things that had to do with space, astronauts, and NASA. I can remember having different space shuttle toys, seeing Apollo 13 at least three time in theaters, and how excited I was when I first visited the Air & Space Museum in Washington D.C. I've also always been a Buzz Aldrin fan. This is a documentary that goes of NASA's Apollo missions, interviewing the surviving crew members who were a part of the different trips to the moon. While Neal Armstrong is notably absent due to his reclusive nature, these other men are very entertaining to listen to, providing some laughs, some very interesting information, and a great energy showing how positive and dear to their heart it was to be among the very few who have actually visited another world. There is no narration in this film. The movie also makes great use of archive footage during that time. Seeing actual rockets take off into space and split apart is always cool to see. There is also footage of JFK's speech about the plans to go to the moon, footage of test rockets blowing up, and of course, footage of ships orbiting and landing on the moon. There is even some interesting footage that was shot in advance of the moon landing. It was a piece read by Nixon in case the astronauts were not able to relaunch off of the moon and were stuck, in which case Nixon assured the people of how great their sacrifice was. An interesting piece of footage. The end credits also have a number of humorous moments from the crew members explaining how ludicrous they believe the conspiracy theorists are to accuse them of not going to the moon. This is a very well made documentary, that features the still lively crew members that had made it to another world and back. Eugene Cernan: We made a total of nine trips to the moon. Why would we fake it nine times?

Aaron Neuwirth
Aaron Neuwirth

Super Reviewer

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