'Apollo 11' | Film Review
It’s nearly impossible to fully appreciate the size and power of the Saturn V rocket. It stands at a towering 363 feet tall—longer than a football field—weighs six and a half million pounds, and totals nearly ten million pounds of thrust.
Sitting atop that behemoth, as is so vividly and viscerally depicted in ‘Apollo 11,’ are three astronauts, each with an unmatched combination of expertise and indomitability that has afforded them the opportunity to be blasted 238,900 miles into space to become the first humans to set foot on the moon.
It’s been a while since we’ve been in a theater where the audience applauded multiple times throughout the screening. ‘Apollo 11’ deserves it. The film celebrates the very best of the American spirit and serves as a visceral reminder of what humanity can achieve when we direct our time, effort, and resources towards the noble pursuits of science, technology, and engineering.
From a filmmaking perspective, ‘Apollo 11’ hits all the right notes. The graphics are poignant in their minimalism, demonstrating the various maneuvers the crew needs to fulfill in order to achieve their mission. The sound design follows suit, allowing the film to breathe at certain times, while ramping up the tone and tension whenever appropriate.
‘Apollo 11’ must be seen during the limited time it will remain in theaters. And while even a large screen and booming sound system can’t quite fully capture the extraordinary magnitude of what space exploration entails, this documentary is certainly the closest many of us will ever come to experiencing it.