Apollo 13 (1995)

A SDG Original source: National Catholic Register

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.

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

Artistic/Entertainment Value

Moral/Spiritual Value

0

Age Appropriateness

Teens & Up

MPAA Rating

PG

Caveat Spectator

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

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.

Drama, History

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