Tom Wolfe's book on the history of the U.S. Space program reads like a novel, and the film has that same fictional quality. It covers the breaking of the sound barrier by Chuck Yeager to the Mercury 7 astronauts, showing that no one had a clue how to run a space program or how to select people to be in it. Thrilling, funny, charming and electrifying all at once. Written by
John Vogel <firstname.lastname@example.org>
While several of the lead actors chose to meet their real-life counterparts, Scott Glenn elected not to meet with Alan Shepard. Scott said he wanted to get down Shepard's character and nuances by observation and by hearing others' points of view. After filming, the real Alan Shepard wrote the director and commented on Scott Glenn's "spot-on" performance - except for "not being nearly as good-looking as he was." See more »
Mis-matched shots when "real" footage is mixed with fictional as Shepard leaves the van heading for the Redstone rocket. See more »
There was a demon that lived in the air. They said whoever challenged him would die. Their controls would freeze up, their planes would buffet wildly, and they would disintegrate. The demon lived at Mach 1 on the meter, seven hundred and fifty miles an hour, where the air could no longer move out of the way. He lived behind a barrier through which they said no man could ever pass. They called it the sound barrier.
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I always loved anything connected to science fact and science fiction and this movie is no exception.
I already owned the Laserdisc version of it, but the DVD is even better.
I love this movie, but I must consider the interest of the public and I honestly cannot say that this is one for the vast public.
The theme alone is a difficult one and deals with the history of the Space Age, as it began from an American perspective, and by telling the story of the astronauts involved in the Mercury project.
Being very long, it might not fit the modern view of a quick-fix movie. This one has to be watched as if your were watching "JFK" or "Gettysburg", therefore with the outmost attention.
It has spectacular recreations of the actual launches, combined with more private moments, involving the astronauts, their loved ones and those who trained them.
This is not Science Fiction and it is not an Adventure movie, this is truly a history lesson about how the Space Race got started, how, with whom and why.
It is a very thoroughly researched movie, although it is not to be confused with a documentary. It is an intelligent movie, with good dialogues, good character recreations, with humor and moments of sadness and tragedy. The heroism of the first astronauts is not represented by their fabulous deeds, but rather by the sacrifices they had to make, in order to be successful.
If you can bare to sit in front of your TV for 3 hours and 15 minutes without unnecessary interruptions, then this documentation may make it clear why men and women risk so much in going "where no one has gone before".
But, as I stated before, this is not an easy going movie and is reserved for all those who want to enjoy a good movie in peace.
I would recommend its showing in every school of the United States, and why not, also throughout the world. Many children would then really appreciate what the conquest of space is all about.
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