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Apollo 11: Men on the Moon [Import]
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Own a piece of history! The most complete record ever available of this historic mission. This 3-disc set - over 10 hours in all - chronicles America's "one giant leap for mankind" from launch to landing with comprehensive footage from the film and videotape records of Apollo 11, the landmark event of man's achievement in the 20th Century. Features all TV transmissions, all 16mm on-board film, multi-angle views of the launch and lunar landing, and multiple audio tracks. Bonus features include the launch vehicle build, crew suit-up, recovery, and extra TV feeds including on-board audio.
Mankind's greatest adventure is remembered for the digital age. The DVD format changed the way we look at movies and especially TV series, with massive complete-season sets. That concept is spectacularly taken one-step further with Spacecraft Films' definitive collections of the Gemini and Apollo space missions, stuffing in nearly every scrap of TV transmissions and on-board footage. The three- to six-disc sets use the full functions of the DVD format; see a liftoff in six different angles (some remixed with 5.1 sound) or listen to a mixture of air-to-ground communications, official NASA narration, or post-flight debriefings, most often carefully synched to the exact moment of footage seen. Like any good research paper, every bit of footage may not be interesting, but taken as a chronicle of history, it's irreplaceable.
NASA's most monumental mission was Apollo 11, placing Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the surface of the moon. Unfortunately, it's one of the least stunningly photographed missions, with grainy black-and-white TV footage for the two-hour moon walk. However it's so rare that hardly anyone has seen more than a few seconds of this broadcast since 1969. Watch the broadcast as it was (alas, no Walter Cronkite, but this is the NASA feed--not a network), or watch the 16mm color footage shot by a stationary camera inside the lunar module, or watch a composition of both that also displays the famous photographs at the moment they were taken (how cool is that?). The moon walk is only one of three discs and there's another eight hours of footage, including all the onboard film and TV transmissions, pre-and post flight news conferences, and 15 views of the launch. Plus there's plenty of behind-the-scenes footage--the assembly of the giant Saturn 5 spacecraft, moon-walk rehearsals, and capsule recovery. For space junkies, it's the ultimate visual treasure trove. Any kid who has primed himself watching Ron Howard's majestic Apollo 13 (which featured no real space footage) will probably be disappointed in the lack of "cool" footage (oddly, the earlier Gemini missions have more "whoa" photography), but anybody interested in the moon mission finally has a complete chronicle of what it looked like when it happened. --Doug Thomas
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Top Customer Reviews
The raw, continous footage shown that was accompanied by the actual air and ground communications was surprisingly satisfying. Surprising, because I wasn't entertained at first. No, instead, this DVD set, without hardly any narration, gave me a greater appreciation for what was experienced and accomplished during Apollo 11's flight. Man, I love it.
Positives: As others have noted, there is seldom-seen footage and it is really good to see. The use of NASA audio and the definite lack of overdramatization (that smothers some other notable multi-disk videos) is also welcome. Seeing the entire lunar EVA is good to see (finally). The minimalistic narratives at times help focus the viewer on what was really going on. There are some uses of multiple-angle views that are novel, but the astonauts' post-flight audio commentary (covering some key mission events)are more interesting. These are significant positives that the Apollo fan will appreciate.
Negatives: While there is some great footage and audio bits, one should remember that that was the result of NASA's prodigious work -- and considerable public money. The producers' job was to assemble and present them as a coherent narrative. They do their best when they simply let the NASA video play (for example, in the case of the entire EVA). But what they themselves have done is quite modest and at times thoughtless. First, they provide absolutely no overall narrative, although several methods -- a second audio track, accompanying booklet, use of subtitles, an occasional diagram -- could have been used. Those not familiar with the mission's major milestones (preparation, science goals, staging, critcal manuevers, etc.) will not gain insight and will be confused by some of the offerings. Take, for example, the footage labeled "probe and drogue" (disk 3), presented after the landing footage.Read more ›
Most importantly, we set out to present the complete television transmissions and onboard motion picture film for individual missions - material that just hasn't been available before. This material is purposely left in its original form, albiet with new digital transfers, color correction where necessary and possible, and digital noise reduction.
To do this we realized we would have to use certain unconventional methods. For example, we wished to present multiple angles of footage from rollout, suitup, etc. To do this required us to use different angles out of context, so that from time to time certain events were shown a couple of times so that the varied angles could be presented. Unless one realizes this was done to present multiple angles one might mistake it for material out of order.
Nearly all of the 16mm film from EVA training, suitup, astronauts visiting the launch pad (all of which was re-transferred from the original using modern, digital telecines) was shot silent, and since we also wished to present as much audio as possible from mission events such as countdowns, we have married this audio to that footage. The result is the maximum amount of primary source material available on the subject and results in important audio from other events used on previously silent film.Read more ›
That being said, it is an AWESOME collection of video and audio, things you didn't see in the network news coverages. There's even audio of Armstrong and Aldrin during a post-mission technical debrief on the lunar approach under video of the approach with graphics describing the technical terms used in the discussion. In many cases multiple audio tracks are available. In the lunar approach you can listen to the Flight Directors loop, full LEM on-board voice recorder, air-to-ground, etc. I only wish they would have included more, particularly of the initial earth orbit and preparation for the trans-lunar injection burn.
Excellent! A definite must-have for any serious space junkie.
Most recent customer reviews
I have watched plenty of documentaries on the Apollo program seeing as I use to collect every thing I could on the space program but I have to honestly say this dvd set blew me... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
If you were alive in July '69 , then you know the feeling the world had as they followed the Apollo 11 astronauts to the moon.This DVD set is a very impressive piece of work. Read morePublished on Dec 23 2003 by ICEMAN
Wow! This is awesome. My favorite movies ever are of course From the Earth to the Moon and Apollo 13. I have also seen many, many lame "space" videos. Read morePublished on Dec 7 2003
When I was 7 or 8 years old, my uncle showed me couple of photos of man walking on the Moon, which he recived from NASA (in the 80's NASA was occasionally sending free photo sets... Read morePublished on Sept. 21 2003
I have been wanting someone to do this for years. The first memory that I can recall is at age four watching the telecast of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin walking on the moon, and... Read morePublished on Sept. 20 2003 by Robert I. Hedges
I am a huge Nasa Fan and am really sick of the lame DVD sets that have been released in the past!!! I have really wondered why Nasa never released comprehensive footage of not only... Read morePublished on Sept. 4 2003 by OrangeCrush
In short... I've been hoping to have this material for 30 years. Having seen glimpses of footage in documentaries over the years, this set finally provides all the material in one... Read morePublished on Aug. 24 2003 by Michael Reeves