Tuesday 29 May 2012

APOLLO 13 - So long, Earth. Catch you on the flip side.

Some lives are really about something. It's not just about making money, it's about something else, discovery.

Strange how something so embedded in the history of humankind is so disregarded by modern society. Tell people you're going to walk rather than take the car and they think you're insane. Stop to watch an insect on its journey and people will think you've lost the plot. Discovery and curiosity are an awkward fit in the capitalism paradigm that we've all conformed to.

It's great to know that occasionally in human history, we've been places. We dared to look to the skies and live out our dreams, despite how insane they were.

And sure, it was about the space race. About Americans beating the Russians. But if you look past that, you see an immense human achievement.

Apollo 13 always resonates more with me than the moon landing. It's great to get to places, but it's even more meaningful when there's failure, when people say, "no matter what, we're bringing you home."

There are some beautiful scenes in the movie between Jim Lovell (Tom Hanks) and his wife Marilyn (Kathleen Quinlan), like when they're in the garden, staring up at the moon and Lovell has named part of the moon after her. His love for her is huge, yet still he feels he must leave her behind to visit the great unknowns of the big dark nothing of the universe.

Is there anything better than a great adventure? Than exploration?

"It's not a miracle, we just decided to go."

A decision. That's all it is. You decide you want to do a thing and then you go to the moon. And you might have roadblocks, like Ken Mattingly (Gary Sinise), who was grounded because of the measles (which he never got), but then it transpired that his expertise down on the ground was far more important.

"You never know what events are to transpire to bring you home."

There's magic in the journey. In exploring some place. In reaching high up into the sky.

Is this film about a bunch of astronauts or is it about you and me and all those journeys we never took?

Care to share?


  1. I really liked the chemistry between Hanks and Quinlan as well. Hanks was one of the best for a long time.

  2. I couldn't really get into this film as much because I knew everything that was going to happen at the end, but it was still a total crowd-pleaser with great performances from an awesome cast. Great review.

    1. 'Total crowd-pleaser' sounds like a bit of a put down? But still; I think it's a terrific movie. And of course, everyone knew how it ended; shame that affected your enjoyment!

  3. And you nail it again. All those thoughts I wish I could put into words. Loved this post, so much. I think I'm gonna end up reading it over and over again.

    1. Thanks so much, really glad it resonated with you :D

  4. Great writing and about a movie I really like, whenever it is on I will watch it.