Sputnik Mania (2007)
Critic Consensus: Featuring riveting footage, Sputnik Mania is an informative, well-made piece that effectively captures the mood during the height of the Cold War.
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Critic Reviews for Sputnik Mania
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Sputnik Mania plays, discreetly, like a negative love story between superpowers. Sure they moved on to other enemies, but they still haven't gotten over each other.
For those too young to remember, Sputnik Mania documents the fear and anxiety that gripped the United States half a century ago when the Soviet Union launched the first satellite in October 1957.
The archival footage here is great, and the cosmos-conquering craziness will satisfy space-race nuts. But the small budget is obvious, so director David Hoffman couldn't go from the Earth to the moon on every detail.
David Hoffman's documentary Sputnik Mania is an account of that Soviet satellite's effect on the American consciousness.
Clips from old television broadcasts make this space documentary entertaining.
Audience Reviews for Sputnik Mania
Eisenhower is the hero of this documentary, which shows the post Sputnik craze in America and how the Cold War spiraled out of control for a few months. One wonders how we did not destroy ourselves in those days. Kudos goes to Eisenhower for keeping space a non-military sphere and for staying cool. I doubt any Republican, circa 2015, could do the same.
Doc did a really good job on setting the stage and mood for the paranoia of the Cold War. Highlights were the filmmakers presented the case of how the USA and USSR got into a "pissing" contest over technology, the hubris of assumed tech superiority by the USA, how fear will make people irrational and the pressures 2 very oppossite leaders felt from thier military to build more weapons into an ever escalating arms race towrds oblivion.
This is a great documentary made better by the DVD having some fun extras of period films, propaganda laced and oddly banal in scientific portrayal. It really is a great dissection of the time period and how the world got caught up with the idea of space travel. It really brought insight into cultural reactions and good personal insight into world leaders. It doesn?t just float along with the news regurgitation, it picks its points and edits them together well. The interviews enhance the story and the visuals add flavor. This is how a documentary can be made well in a non-Michael Moore or Ken Burns way. A by-the-book doc done well.
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