By now, most who wanted to see this film will have done so. I've had to wait all this time for a convenient screening.
It's a film of two parts, running in tandem - first, and for me the far more interesting one (I'm a lifelong avid space nerd) being the selection and training of Neil Armstrong, played by Ryan Gosling, in the run up to the moon landing in 1969, with some extraordinary re-creations. The other is the domestic, familial setting of the Armstrong family with his wife (Claire Foy) so concerned about the risks her husband is taking that her every appearance for me dragged the film down, being the irritant that she was in her perennially dour mood, worried about him leaving their children fatherless, they having seen their near neighbour lose his life in a malfunction which had turned the space capsule into a fireball. killing all three astronauts on board - an horrifying event which those of my age will recall in the news of the time.
I realise that the purpose of the film was to depict the human element of the story with more emphasis than such films generally do, and to that extent it was triumphant. However, such a constant juxtaposition of moods between the excitement and headiness of the venture itself and the lowly humdrum of down-to-earth life vexed me somewhat in this long film. I could have done with far less of the latter in a much truncated film.
As I say, the training routines for Armstrong (and his colleagues Aldrin and Collins) are spectacularly brought to life, and the space images themselves are extraordinary, though condensed, of course, from hours and even days down to a very few minutes. Highly impressive nonetheless.
Director Damien Chazelle was already a name to be reckoned with with, among his very few directing projects to date are included 'La La Land' and 'Whiplash'. This latest film can only add to his notable achievements.
I might have rated this film higher if it had concentrated more on the space aspect rather than give equal time to the human story. I could have lived better with a 70;30 ratio, but that's a very personal opinion. Nevertheless, still a rare good watch................7.
(IMDb..................7.7 / Rott. Toms.............8.1 )
2 hours ago