Apollo 13 (1995)

Directed by Ron Howard. Tom Hanks, Kevin Bacon, Bill Paxton, Gary Sinese, Ed Harris, Kathleen Quinlan. Universal.

Decent Films Ratings

Entertainment Value
Value (+4/-4)
? +0
?Teens & Up

External Ratings


Content advisory: Recurring profanity and a crude reference; brief clinical bathroom content, brief innuendo and mild sexual content (nothing explicit).

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Apollo 13 (DVD)

From a National Catholic Register review

By Steven D. Greydanus

In an age when we rely on computerized directions and GPS devices to drive to the next town, it seems an almost mythic scenario: brilliant men calculating outer-space trajectories on the fly with pencils and slide rules, keeping life and limb together literally with duct tape, flying to the moon and back simply because they could.

Apollo 13, Ron Howard’s wonderfully low-key, documentary-like dramatization of the ill-fated lunar mission of that name, is a thrilling tribute to the ingenuity, courage, teamwork, and professionalism of the astronauts and ground crew who turned America’s first outer-space disaster from an account of frustration and potential tragedy into a triumphant rescue story.

The entire cast is excellent, with Hanks, Bill Paxton, and Kevin Bacon in space and Ed Harris and Gary Sinese (affecting in a rare non–bad-guy role) as key figures on the ground. The director’s mother, Jean Speegle Howard, has a plum supporting role as Lovell’s mother Blanche, a real character who gets a few of the film’s best lines. The weightless effects, many done in 30-second snatches in a free-falling NASA airplane, are mesmerizing.

Tags: History, Drama

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