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Without a debut, Ron Howard's finest film to date. A gripping, robust dramatization of the Apollo 13 mission, impeccably told and superbly acted. - 9/10
one of the best movies i have ever scene, much watch
This is one of those films that I would consider overrated not because I don't think it's a good film but for all of the praise that gets heaped on it for being one of the best films of the 1990s. It's a solid film that's very good places but it also faces it's lulls and has that unfortunate decent but never brilliant sheen that always rests over Ron Howard directed films. It's probably one of the best films about astronauts, up there with The Right Stuff (1983) and Marooned (1969), but it features actors essentially playing themselves and doesn't illuminate the experiences of working in a stressful job in the way that The Right Stuff does. I would definitely say that you should watch this, I saw it in school, but don't go in expecting the masterpiece it has been heralded as.
Astronauts Jim Lovell, Tom Hanks, Jack Swigert, Kevin Bacon and Fred Haise, Bill Paxton, will serve as the crew that flies on the Apollo 13 aircraft in April of 1970 as Swigert replaces the ill Ken Mattingly, Gary Sinise, who resents this decision. The men quickly encounter problems when they are launched into space and it is up to the men and their flight commander on the ground Gene Kranz, Ed Harris, to get themselves back to earth alive. It will require some tough maneuvers and everybody pitching in, including Mattingly, to get the men home safely.
The film does a good job at building tension even as we know that these men will survive, an often stated view on this film but nevertheless true. We get to learn about Lovell's relationship with his wife Marilyn, Kathleen Quinlan, before we see him as an astronaut which makes us invested in him when his life is threatened. We feel that we know these men personally because their struggles are relatable, we've all worried for a family member or been passed over for a job at least once in our lives, and as they have tense discussions about flight plans we are engaged because we like these men and want to see them succeed. This is what so many disaster movies miss as they expect us to be invested in the lives of people just because they are threatened without showing what they will be missing out on in life.
The performances are all solid if unremarkable as Howard assembles Hanks, Harris, Sinise, Bacon, Paxton and Quinlan to perform admirably in an ensemble drama. I would not have given this film the Academy Award nominations it received for acting as Quinlan and Harris are serviceable but not superlative in a year that gave us Illeana Douglas in To Die For (1995) and Clive Russell in Margaret's Museum (1995). Hanks pulls a Captain Phillips (2013) and just plays himself but his charm is enough to carry the performance and his accessibility allows even the least interested viewer to become invested. Howard is typically good with actors as shown in his best film, The Paper (1994), and here he uses a reliable cast to great effect, if only he had brought that skill to A Beautiful Mind (2001).
I would not considered Howard to be one of the best directors working today but he did deserve recognition for his work on this film as he adapts the story to the screen artfully. He makes all the right decisions as he steps around having too much focus on the technical aspects of the mission and doesn't over saturate the film with details about the personal lives of the characters. We are pushed far enough to earn an emotional response but not so far that we are resentful of the manipulation. In any case he did a better job than Mel Gibson did on Braveheart (1995) and we could have avoided the infamous 2001 Best Picture win had he been rewarded at this point.
You can watch this film anywhere with anybody and I suppose that's one of the reasons for it's enduring popularity but mostly it's just a very well made, tense film. Howard's direction and the skillful storytelling raise the film above the rest and although it's not perfect it deserves praise.
No one in my generation will forget those 3 days. Ron Howard has done history a great service in documenting this event with a masterful re-enactment that puts the audience aboard Odyssey and Aquarius during NASA's "Successful Failure" Lunar mission.
A truly great film all around with a great cast all around. A true adventure into space with everything on the line, Apollo 13 delivers on its promise of a suspenseful yet exciting space adventure. Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon and many other amazing actors make this film come to life.
With many "Based on real events" films out there this is master class.
Apollo 13, is a brilliant and well made historical movie that is awe catching!
Possibly one of the finest depictions of a historical event ever produced. Apollo 13 has a deadly blend of inspiration, terror and drama. I love this film.
âApollo 13â?, released in 1995 follows three astronauts who must make their way home to Earth after their flight path to the moon gets derailed. The movie made me feel incredibly empathetic. Once the men were stranded in space, I was hanging onto everything that happened in the film. It made me think how incredibly terrifying that must have been for the men and their families. I donâ(TM)t feel that Iâ(TM)ve seen enough films within this particular genre to be able to compare, but I felt that this one was profound and very professional and there isnâ(TM)t anything I would have done differently. In terms of writing, I most enjoyed when Jimâ(TM)s son expressed his concern over his dad getting safely to the moon while Marilyn listened on in the background. It sets up the stakes for the film because the prior spaceship that had been sent off didnâ(TM)t make it safely. I also really enjoyed the line that the film ended with when Jim says, âwhen would we be going back, and who would that be?â? It was such a great way to end the film - on a high note and to leave the audience with something to think about. In regard to the directing, my favorite shot was when Jimâ(TM)s wife is having a bad dream about Jim being sucked out of the spaceship and it goes into an extreme close-up of her eye opening and looking around. I also particularly enjoyed the shots that took place inside the spacecraft. They were all tilted, which offered an interesting perspective of the alternate reality the men have to get used to within the spacecraft. In general, I feel that the editing that was done between what was going on in the rocket along with what was going on in the command center was done really well. There was a lot of editing between reactions to what is happening and what is actually happening which really heightened the tension and added to the dramatization of each step in the process. When the guys realize they arenâ(TM)t going to the moon thereâ(TM)s a very pregnant pause, which was a great example of pacing. In regard to acting, my favorite scene was when they tell Ken that he canâ(TM)t be on Apollo 13. Everyone was listening really well with each other; the scene wasnâ(TM)t big and angry when it could easily have been performed that way. Overall, the cinematography was wonderful, and my favorite scene was when they did the urine dump from the spaceship. Everything sprays out of the ship in front of the stars. It was a really cool shot! The sound design was probably my favorite part of the film. The swell of the music when the guys get on the spacecraft accentuated the momentous moment. Then when the rocket takes off, itâ(TM)s not overwhelmingly loud but thereâ(TM)s so much sound and depth of sound that you can tell something huge and powerful is happening
This is one hell of a space thriller, very masterfully done, in the fashion of best movies about space. Cuaron's 'Gravity' was clearly inspired by these events and this movie in particular, since some scenes are just copied, even though, of course, it's hard to avoid them, since it can't be otherwise. The crew, the director, cinematographer, composer and all the rest did a very good job. A highly entertaining movie.