From Friday’s Weekend Look section of The Oklahoman.
“In the Shadow of the Moon”
British director David Sington recaptures the sense of wonder and danger of the Apollo space missions in his earnest and visually dazzling documentary “In the Shadow of the Moon.”
The concept is strikingly simple: Tell the story of NASA’s moon missions through eye-popping archival footage and candid, close-up interviews with 10 of the surviving astronauts. The footage, much of it never used before, was carefully remastered.
The documentary chronicles the founding of the Apollo program, the fiery deaths of the Apollo 1 crew and the successful lunar orbit on Apollo 8. It lingers over the triumphant Apollo 11 moon landing, skims over the well-known near-debacle of Apollo 13 and shows later crews’ Lunar Rover joyrides.
Sington puts the space race in a cultural context. It covers the Apollo program and the astronauts’ reflections on it in less than two hours. The DVD includes more than an hour of bonus footage and interviews.
The absence of publicity-shy Neil Armstrong looms, and Oklahomans will miss Weatherford native Tom Stafford. Still, the documentary offers an amazing real-life star trek.