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Destination Moon (1950)

 -  Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi  -  August 1950 (USA)
6.4
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Ratings: 6.4/10 from 2,301 users  
Reviews: 64 user | 35 critic

One of the first science fiction films to attempt a high level of accurate technical detail tells the story of the first trip to the moon.

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(written for the screen by), (written for the screen by), 2 more credits »
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Title: Destination Moon (1950)

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Won 1 Oscar. Another 2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
John Archer ...
Warner Anderson ...
Tom Powers ...
General Thayer
Dick Wesson ...
Joe Sweeney
Erin O'Brien-Moore ...
Emily Cargraves
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Storyline

After their their latest rocket fails, Dr. Charles Cargraves and retired General Thayer have to start over again. this time, Gen. Thayer approaches Jim Barnes, the head of his own aviation construction firms to help build a rocket that will take them to the moon. Together they gather the captains of industry and all pledge to support the goals of having the united States be the first to put a man on the moon. They build their rocket and successfully leave the Earth's gravitational pull and make the landing as scheduled. Barnes has miscalculated their fuel consumption however and after stripping the ship bare, they are still 100 lbs too heavy meaning that one of them will have to stay behind. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

TWO YEARS IN THE MAKING!


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

August 1950 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Endstation Mond  »

Box Office

Gross:

$5,000,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Of the film's 90-minute runtime, only half actually shows the trip to the Moon. The film's entire first half is devoted to the construction of the rocket and to giving reasons for going to the Moon in the first place. See more »

Goofs

When first watching this film, it appears as though the crew looks through the round port that leads into the airlock to view the Earth outside the ship. This looks like a continuity error, but it is not - the confusion comes from the elaborate "special effect" of weightlessness generated with a rotating set and magnetic boots. The crew was squatting on the "wall" of the cabin and looking "out" through a round porthole on the outer wall of the ship, not down through the floor. There is indeed a round airlock door that leads down into a lower cabin where the spacesuits are kept, but it is not the same round port they looked through to see outside. The rotated perspective, the magnetic shoe use, and the two round windows causes this common misconception. See more »

Quotes

[Experiencing spacesickness]
General Thayer: I know one thing: unless these pills work, space travel isn't going to be... popular.
See more »

Crazy Credits

At the end of the film, a story of the first flight to the Moon, the words THIS IS THE END are displayed first, then OF THE BEGINNING is added. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Flight to Mars (1951) See more »

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User Reviews

A rare bit of 1950s science-fiction.
19 June 2000 | by (Oregon USA) – See all my reviews

Most science-fiction films are actually raw fantasy, with a disregard for reality that commonly borders on pure contempt. This isn't always a bad thing, since I really like fantasy. But techno-babble and flashy gadgets are too often only gimmicks favored by dumb producers, ignorant directors, and lazy writers who get themselves into of a jam. "Destination Moon" is rare and different. An enormous amount of time and effort were expended to make it as technically accurate as was possible in 1950. Even Kubrick wasn't this consistent in "2001"; he often let gravity appear where it shouldn't be. They never made that mistake in "Destination Moon". So it's unfortunate they didn't spend as much effort on the story and the acting, but both cast and crew were so wrapped up in creating a real moon trip they skimped on these aspects of story telling. The result was surprisingly impressive visuals for the time, but characters who are shallow, trite, and dull, and crises that arise and are solved while leaving us indifferent.

But there is real drama here, the drama of people trying to imagine what was virtually unimaginable back then -- how to actually get people to the Moon and back -- using real physics and engineering. And if it doesn't measure up to the story of "Apollo 13", another technically accurate film about a REAL trip to the Moon, it still stands out as unique among 1950s films and remains almost as unique among all science-FICTION movies ever made.


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