Sidewalk Astronomer (2005)


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Movie Info

'A Sidewalk Astronomer' is the story of John Dobson, an 89-year old monk-turned-scientist who revolutionized astronomy with the invention of the Dobsonian telescope mount, which made telescopes accessible to the public on every continent. Dobson is a co-founder of "Sidewalk Astronomers," an organization encouraging amateurs to share their telescopes and knowledge with others on busy city streets and in national parks. The film follows Dobson as he tours the country from the sidewalks of San Francisco to colleges, universities, astronomy clubs, star parties and to Stellafane, a convention of telescope makers in Vermont. In the process, we get to know Dobson, a fascinating thinker, philosopher, teacher, and inventor. This astronomical and cosmological journey is illustrated with actual footage and photos of space shot from satellites and spacecraft.


Critic Reviews for Sidewalk Astronomer

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (6)

A documentary that knows to sit back and listen as he expounds on a variety of subjects.

Sep 22, 2005 | Full Review…

Although it introduces us to a quirky, humorous, enthusiastic and obviously intelligent 89-year-old man, it is a minor documentary of a major figure.

Jul 15, 2005 | Rating: 1/4 | Full Review…

Whether or not one buys his alternate theory of cosmic recycling, Dobson's colorful language and passionate beliefs transcend particulars.

Jul 14, 2005 | Full Review…
Top Critic

Did you know that Jupiter is big enough to hold 1,300 Earths? Or that it rains sulfuric acid on Venus?

Jul 9, 2005 | Rating: 3/4

This inspiring documentary invites viewers to pause for a moment and consider their place in the solar system, the galaxy and the universe.

Jul 7, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/5

An unenlightening recitation of lay science and salad bar spirituality.

Jul 6, 2005 | Full Review…

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