Space Race (TV Series 2005– ) Poster

(2005– )

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Absolutely Stunning
jgernert-111 June 2006
This mini-series was so riveting, I had to watch it several times in it's entirety to catch everything. I certainly wish that there were more docudramas like this. The portrayal of Sergei Korolev was, for lack of a better word, amazing. All production values, in my opinion, went above and beyond anything that I have seen on television in years. Yet, it is such a shame that the series ended with the Apollo 11 moon landing. Though, it would be interesting to see the development of the Space Shuttle, MIR, The Voyager Missions, Viking, Spacelab, and the I.S.S. as well as other Soviet and current Russian spacecraft documented in a continuation of this series. I found Space Race to be inspiring as well as aspiring for future generations to know that we can do anything, if we dare to dream.
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One of the best in it's genre
DJMonline7 December 2005
This 4 parter is no less than excellent. Whether a student of history, a student of the reality of space flight or if you only have a passing interest in the subject you will be gripped. It is so well put together and played that even though the events are matter of history you find yourself holding your breath with anticipation as the events unfold and asking yourself "will they, won't they" even though you may already know the answer. I would thoroughly recommend this to anyone with any interest, it's the best series of it's genere (I dare to say, better "From the Earth to the Moon" which I have enjoyed many viewings).

Buy it, rent, catch it on a repeat but don't miss this outstanding piece of not just television but filmaking.
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It's about the Soviets and Americans fight to Space
Jaz_2465 October 2005
This television series is probably the best ever written about the 'Space Race' by the Soviets and the Americans. I never know the full history behind the Soviets designer, Sergei Korolev. And after watching this it gives you the whole background knowledge you need ever. This is a series I would really recommend watching whether you are interested in Space or not as either way it is fulfilling. I liked the way that the actors playing Werner Von Braun and Sergei Korolev were precise and really made you think that it was really them. Although when you first learn about Space history all you learn about is the first man on the moon and I don't think that the Soviets really get a big a mention as the Americans as it was the Soviets who first got into Space as a start.This series takes you through from the first satellite into outer space to the landing of the first man on the moon. Great series I recommend it to anyone.
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Riveting viewing
mailbox-235 October 2005
A breathtaking view of an incredible period of world history never to be repeated. Cold war politics, ambitious personalities, and ingenious technological developments, all vie for centre stage, the winner for me being the sheer boldness and courage of engineers and astronauts of that amazing era. The tension is maintained throughout and it is a roller-coaster ride of success and failure, triumph and tragedy, joy and despair, the key players represented "warts and all" as real personalities . I found it a completely absorbing TV experience, real footage skillfully intertwined with reenactment. The views of the rocket launches - real or CGI - left me awestruck; I am sorry there were only 4 episodes, but it means not a moment is wasted.
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The engineers who had 'The Right Stuff'
Cheerful_Dragon20 October 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This series tells the story of the space race from the point of view of the engineers who headed the USSR's and USA's rocket teams. It shows the triumphs and the tragedies without taking sides. I was delighted when Korolev, the USSR's long-unnamed 'Chief Designer', launched his first rocket, and also when Sputnik and then Gagarin made it into space. I shared Von Braun's frustration when the US military passed the satellite project to the Navy, a frustration doubled by the fact that he could have had a satellite into space a year before the Soviets.

In 'The Right Stuff', the astronauts and test pilots held centre stage, and rightly so. That was their film. But however good that film was, it turned Von Braun into a caricature of a German scientist. This series tells his side of the story. It also shows the human side of the Soviet race for space and makes the viewer care about them as much as about the Americans. There is no 'us and them' in this series, just people doing something they care about. The performances are spot on and Robert Lindsay's quiet narration is perfect for giving background information and linking segments. Definitely deserves 10/10
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Good TV movie, but it misses a lot of detail
beeryusa9 June 2006
Firstly I should say that I saw the US version of the miniseries - apparently this version has a different narrator than the English version. Why the creators felt that was necessary is beyond me - is an English accent all that distracting for Americans? I don't think so. The 'Walking with Dinosaurs' videos have the same problem, and are virtually ruined by poor quality narration for the American versions.

I liked this movie, but some things frustrated me.

I think the scriptwriter made a mistake in trying to cover both the US and Soviet efforts to land a man on the moon. I think the miniseries would have been better if it had concentrated on the Soviet side of things (as the US side has been virtually done to death). The Russian parts somehow seemed deeper to me - I don't know why - perhaps it was that the personalities were more likable, or maybe the acting was just a bit more nuanced. Anyway, I felt cheated whenever the action shifted to the US.

The movie is technically very good, with great special effects and good accents all around. When German is spoken it really sounds like German - none of the deeply accented German we're used to hearing with British/American productions. The Russian also seems good, although my knowledge of the Russian language is not that good.

Where the movie really fails is in terms of the scope of the production: far too much is squeezed into four hours, and a great deal of important detail is lost. We get about five minutes covering Yuri Gagarin's flight, and less for Alexei Leonov's first space walk. Valentina Tereshkova's flight (the first female in space) is not even mentioned - in fact she doesn't get any mention at all - one is led to believe that all the cosmonauts were men. Similarly omitted is the Soviet lunar module. Basically the Russian side of things is basically ignored as Apollo gets off the ground. Finally, I felt the miniseries fizzled out - the US moon landing was covered very sketchily, and that was the end. I felt the film would have benefited if the Apollo-Soyuz mission was covered - that was, after all, the true end of the US-Soviet competition, and it would have ended the film on a note of hopefulness and international cooperation.
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effective docu-series
dromasca27 December 2006
I watched the series on the European Arte channel and was really impressed. I am not a fan of the docu-series mixed with actors, but in this case the method played well by filling in the wholes in documentary coverage, and by telling much more and in a more expressive manner about the principal characters in the space race and their feelings and motivations.

Certainly, there are many details that were left out, and many of the Russian viewers on the different Web fora pointed out that the presentation lacks balance and accuracy. Yet, the documentary information was extremely valuable, as all the Soviet space program was so much covered by secrecy and deformed by propaganda that I realized that despite the fact that I was living in a Communist country by that time I knew almost nothing about it.

This is a film to watch, and hopefully more will be done on the same subject and throw more light on these exciting aspects of mankind recent history.
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Russians are disappointed
dana7-113 April 2006
I've just visited Russian forum of our TV-channel that had showed this film. Well... 99 per cent of active Russian audience is disappointed. We wanted to see more true facts of our space achievements in this film. But authors had in mind something else... :( We are big and beautiful country with intelligent people living here. We are proud of all our space dreams, real achievements on the one hand in this field and in science on the other hand. So I'd like to ask authors: Where is our LUNOHOD? And where, the Hell our MIR station? Ah? I'm quite sure, that LUNOHOD events took place much earlier Armstrong's "walk on Moon". And to comment numerous technical and science mistakes - I really have no time and enough space here! Se our constructive critics in Russian forum on
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Tiresome, dilettantish and inauthentic movie!
olegvi12 April 2006

In 1965 I saw Jury Gagarin alive. He was sincere, unpretentious and kindly, he was at ease and looked like well-educated and intellectual person. In this movie I saw a clown! The actor looks like dummy with affected gestures and mimicry. They made a cartoon! The real Gagarin was someone else! Don't believe in this movie!

I saw this movie after the movies like "Taming of Fire" and "Apollo 13" and after reading books "Rockets and People" by Chertok and "Korolev: Myths and Facts" by Golovanov. I was shocked by tiresome scenario, poor acting and producing, and a lots of inexactitudes of "Space Race".

The movie is the tedious rendering of well-known in Russia historical facts. A lots of interesting known facts of the space projects was not demonstrated. Some facts and details were perverted. For example, in 1945 Korolev was already not a prisoner (liberated in 1944), and in 1940 he was already not in Kolyma prison gold mine, but in special prison design bureau. Korolev was the designer in prison design bureau and he was not buried the dead prisoners. But in the movie Korolev worked as grave digger after 1940 (because jailer have shoulder straps on uniform). IMHO, the authors of movie have no profound knowledge about this part of the history and they can't to make interesting movies.
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Extremely poor in history details and unconvincing in play
lissov14 April 2006
My comment is for the Russian version of Space Race named Bitva za Kosmos (Battle for Space) shown on Russia's First Channel on April 10-13, 2006. Bad translation could have ruined some details but I doubt it's the case. The number of factual errors is such that it's impossible to list them, especially in the first episode (the development of first missiles). Even the U.S. half of the film contains multiple errors and omissions. The audience is not told of any V-2/A-4 launches from the U.S. Three different Jupiter C rockets are launched with the same serial number 'UE' onboard. Apollo 1 is to be launched to the Moon, etc. In the Russian half, each and every person is ludicrous. Korolev is scared of NKVD, Glushko is saboteur and traitor, Mishin is alcoholic etc. Men as functions; no motivation, no life at all. Uniform and decorations are awful. Gagarin sings a frivolous song awaiting launch (I think this was added specially for Russian version).
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