"Man on the Moon": the danger lies in the details

From October 11, in cinemas you can admire the creation of Damien Chazelle “Man on the Moon” (2018). However, unlike the Hollywood space stories, where the viewer is trying to lure aliens, black holes and wormholes, the specific picture reflects the real mission of NASA to send the first astronauts to the moon. And while other scenarios excel in dramatic inserts, “Man on the Moon” sometimes amazes with a sense of control and consistency.

You find yourself in an environment of brilliant minds in clean rooms with computers and calculation tables. The main success of Chasella is hidden in the details. The viewer does not observe the original scientific project, but the initiative, supported by hope and will. All events are viewed through the perception of Neil Armstrong (Ryan Gosling).

The film begins in 1961, where Armstrong is still working as an engineer and test pilot in the Mojave Desert. Then he joins NASA and participates in the lunar program. Where did this goal come from? The main motive is the space race with the USSR. America is concerned about the dominance of the Soviets, and therefore plans to win at the expense of an ambitious mission. It all starts with the Gemini program, which should open the way for space docking and landing on the surface of the earth satellite. Armstrong has to not only face challenges, but also survive the death of his beloved 3-year-old daughter and the death of fellow astronauts.

Shazelle had a clear vision of the film, which should literally put viewers in the booths of the vehicles. While watching, you feel the same as Armstrong and his colleagues, who risk their lives in mechanical boxes. In a sense, there is a challenge to other films about space missions, which only play on danger, while here you are dreaming of fastening your seat belt with your heroes. “The Man on the Moon” inspires horror with loosening bolts that bring claustrophobia with tiny cabins and dips. The picture not only demonstrates the achievements, but also shows how much the people who were dreaming to realize this great idea risked then.

Problems arise with the protagonist. It can be said that “Man on the Moon” does not try to cling to the biography, and Armstrong is just the director’s means for transmitting the history of the space program. Some critics are outraged by the fact that the character turned out to be somehow too collected, purposeful, and sometimes, like a robot, devoid of feelings. But on the other hand, if Neal seemed scared and tossing about the emotional range, would he have been entrusted with such an important mission? Ryan Gosling shows us a silent and slightly closed Armstrong. However, even in such non-verbosity, the astronaut’s power and experiences are visible.

It can be seen that during the entire film Armstrong is faced with death, starting with his daughter and ending with his colleagues. He has to keep emotions in himself in order not to lose professionalism. That is why he became a great astronaut. One gets the impression that all his true experiences are displayed in the wife of Janet (Claire Foy), who allows herself to be angry, afraid and anxious about her husband.

“The Man on the Moon” contains the story of NASA's lunar mission and the biography of Neil Armstrong. This is an attempt to once again experience the entire planet with the delight and triumph of the human genius, which allowed us to break away from our own planet and touch the other world for the first time.

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