By: Oberst Von Berauscht (Two Beers) –
The hours of footage chronicling the Apollo 11 Moon Landing in July of 1969 are compiled and trimmed to tell a single cohesive narrative about the events leading up to, during, and shortly following the mission. Working in cooperation with NASA, Apollo 11 features no voiceover, instead using radio chatter from the mission along with archival clips, to provide a glimpse of how the event was being witnessed around the world as one of the largest single news events in history.
This stellar (pun intended) documentary follows the events of the mission chronologically from the preparation leading up to the launch to the aftermath following the mission’s success. Few times in film history has a documentary captured a singular event with as much incredible footage as is seen here. Much of the footage besides that of the astronauts themselves is a new focus on the actions of the Houston and Cape Kennedy ground control crew as they work tirelessly throughout the adventure. While history remembers the Moon Landing as the mission of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin, (too often even ignoring 3rd crewmember Michael Collins) the truth is the Space Program was a massive endeavor that utilized the talents of thousands of individuals all over the country and beyond. Each with their own specialized roles, without whose contribution the aims of the mission would have been impossible. Apollo 11 shows how the cogs turn from all of these perspectives.
This guy’s entire job was ensuring that Neil Armstrong’s space suit worked. And he’s only one of an entire team with that job.
Perhaps the film’s only real fault is familiarity. The story of the first landing on the moon is so ingrained into the knowledge of most Americans that it might seem like it is unnecessary to tell it again. That said, I’m a student of history and also was born to parents who were alive when it happened, so I might not be able to contextualize the film’s importance to current younger generations. Especially in this modern society where unquestionable facts are questioned by the very people we deem worthy to lead us, maybe we need a movie like this to show that all this really happened (sorry Mr. Kubrick).
“Shit, is that a Monolith in your visor, or are you just happy to see me?”
You’ve seen a lot of this footage before in history class, but never as clean and never contextualized this wonderfully. This procedural documentary takes you through the events of the Apollo 11 moon landing without any pretension or talking heads telling you how you should feel about it.
Apollo 11 (2019) Drinking Game
Take a Drink: for shots of space (just kidding, you’ll die… unless that’s your goal.)
Take a Drink: whenever “Apollo” is named
Take a Drink: when “Eagle” or “Columbia” is named
Do a Shot: for celebrity astronaut name-drops