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For All Mankind (1989)

Not Rated  |   |  Documentary, History  |  1 November 1989 (USA)
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This movie documents the Apollo missions perhaps the most definitively of any movie under two hours. Al Reinert watched all the footage shot during the missions--over 6,000,000 feet of it, ... See full summary »


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Title: For All Mankind (1989)

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 4 wins. See more awards »



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Director: Al Reinert


Credited cast:
Narrator - Apollo 8, Apollo 13 (voice) (as James A. Lovell Jr.)
Russell Schweickart ...
Narrator - Apollo 9 (voice) (as Russell L. Schweickart)
Eugene Cernan ...
Narrator - Apollo 10, Apollo 17 (voice) (as Eugene A. Cernan)
Michael Collins ...
Narrator - Apollo 11 (voice)
Charles Conrad ...
Narrator - Apollo 12 (voice) (as Charles P. Conrad Jr.)
Richard Gordon ...
Narrator - Apollo 12 (voice) (as Richard F. Gordon Jr.)
Alan Bean ...
Narrator - Apollo 12 (voice) (as Alan L. Bean)
Jack Swigert ...
Narrator - Apollo 13 (voice) (as John L. Swigert Jr.)
Stuart Roosa ...
Narrator - Apollo 14 (voice) (as Stuart A. Roosa)
James Irwin ...
Narrator - Apollo 15 (voice) (as James B. Irwin)
Kenneth Mattingly ...
Narrator - Apollo 16 (voice) (as T. Kenneth Mattingly II)
Charles Duke ...
Narrator - Apollo 16 (voice) (as Charles M. Duke Jr.)
Harrison Schmitt ...
Narrator - Apollo 17 (voice) (as Harrison H. Schmitt)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Himself (archive footage)
Bill Anders ...
Himself (archive footage)


This movie documents the Apollo missions perhaps the most definitively of any movie under two hours. Al Reinert watched all the footage shot during the missions--over 6,000,000 feet of it, and picked out the best. Instead of being a newsy, fact-filled documentary. Reinart focuses on the human aspects of the space flights. The only voices heard in the film are the voices of the astronauts and mission control. Reinart uses the astronaunts' own words from interviews and from the mission footage. The score by Brian Eno underscores the strangeness, wonder, and and beauty of the astronauts' experiences--experiences which they were privileged to have for a first time "for all mankind." Written by Scott B. Fisher <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A Film by Al Reinert


Not Rated | See all certifications »




Release Date:

1 November 1989 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Erövringen av rymden  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$770,132 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the opening scene, President John F. Kennedy stands at the podium, giving his famous speech about the government's plan for lunar travel at Rice University. In the scene, President Kennedy's voice-over says, "We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained and new rights to be won and they must be won and used for the progress of all mankind." President Kennedy in actuality, said, "...used for the progress of all people." Director Al Reinert, using creative license, decided to splice President Kennedy's words, dubbing "mankind" over "people," using a part of the President's speech earlier on in his address. See more »


For scenes of spacewalks in earth orbit, scenes from Apollo 9 are mixed with scenes from Gemini program spacewalks. See more »


John Young: [alone in the Command Module, following CSM-LEM separation during Apollo X] You'll never know how big this thing gets when there ain't nobody in here but one guy.
See more »

Crazy Credits

This film is dedicated to the men and women who have given their lives in the exploration of Space. Apollo 1 January 27, 1967 Virgil I. "Gus" Grissom Edward H. White II Roger B. Chaffee Soyuz 1 April 24, 1967 Vladimir Komarov Soyuz 11 June 30, 1971 Vladislav Volkov Georgi Dobrovolski Viktor Patsayev Challenger January 28, 1986 Michael J. Smith Dick Scobee Ronald McNair Ellison Onizuka Christa McAuliffe Gregory Jarvis Judith Resnik See more »


Referenced in Alunizar (2013) See more »


Courtesy of EG Records (Apollo)
Written and Performed by Brian Eno and Daniel Lanois
Licensed by EG Music, Inc. (BMI)
See more »

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User Reviews

A Film That Is Truly "For All Mankind"
12 April 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I saw this film at a very, very young age and I suspect that it is the reason I developed a heavy interest in space exploration. I recently saw this again for the first time in many years since all I had was a vague recollection of it. And after watching many times since then I have no problem saying that this is one of the best documentaries ever made.

One must give the film's director, Al Reinert, at a ton of credit for his work. Who else could have come up with the brilliant notion behind this film? Who would have thought of taking footage from all of the Apollo missions (and a couple of the Gemini missions) and combining them with the words of the men who went where no one had (or has since) gone before? (Apologies for paraphrasing Star Trek) The genius of this film is that it shuns away from traditional documentary styling. Instead of compiling facts on one mission and having a well known actor/actress do the narration, the film lets those who went tell the story. Who else is better qualified? They might not be professional actors, but the astronauts don't need to be. It is the power of the events they describe that is the main reason for their presence. They are a powerful voice in this story.

In many reviews I have read, I have seen complaints about the mixing of footage or the use of footage out of its context (a Gemini reentry used for the TLI burn for example). Yes the mixing is nowhere near subtle and is, thus, blatantly obvious. But it is my feeling that this mixing was necessary. The only way to get across the story of Apollo's achievement to the average person was to mix the footage. Does it really matter in the end? I mean by that this: the film isn't about a single mission to the Moon. No, the power of Apollo lies not in each mission, but in the overall effect of the Apollo program. This film is about the journey of Apollo, the effect in had on the astronauts, and the effect it had on us all.

If there is one element of this film that really stayed with men it was the music. It is among the most beautiful and haunting things you will ever here. Brian Eno does a marvelous job of conveying the mystery and majesty of both space and the Moon. This is one of those scores who really have to hear to believe.

For All Mankind, perhaps better then anything else out there, demonstrates the power of humanity in space. For one to really appreciate this film it needs to be seen on a large screen in surround sound. Only then can one appreciate both the film and the power of the Apollo legacy. This is the first film I've seen that I recommend to everyone. This is a film that is truly "For All Mankind".

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