Starring: Ryan Gosling, Claire Foy, Jason Clarke, Corey Stoll, Kyle Chandler, Olivia Hamilton (Rated M – 131 min).
Despite what the amazing trailer suggests, this is not an all out intrepid space exploration adventure. Only in part, as the slow brooding film has a focus on grief, family despair and accomplishment of first man to set foot on the moon, Mr. Neil Armstrong.
Scientist, engineer, pilot Armstrong subjectively portrayed by Ryan Gosling is the mainstay around an entire accomplished ensemble however everywhere girl at the moment Claire Foy as wife Janet, repeatedly hit the exceptional mark.
Tragedy within their lives always close, Neil remains determined to his best for the early stages of NASA space program while supporting family although the latter becomes straining to say the least closer to the main launch. More of a biographical account than action it may be, the awesome lead up and eventual moon landing alongside the other outer atmosphere visits are best seen on big screen, scope and design extremely well done.
Directed by Whiplash / La La Land auteur Damien Chazelle, the character study comes across mostly dull I’m afraid, almost like slowly reading a text book then tediously going back over it to check you haven’t missed something. Some may suggest Gosling Oscar-worthy, it wouldn’t surprise me although I don’t believe that’s the case here. Brooding, extremely intricate and personal he is, just not entirely convinced.
Emmy award winner Foy (The Crown), soon to be seen in Girl in the Spider’s Web, extraordinary in every aspect from mother to wife to friend, her range knocks me out. Australian Jason Clarke (Knight of Cups) impressive.
Disappointing score by twice Oscar-winning composer Justin Hurwitz. At times it seemed to replicate symphonies and beats of 2001: A Space Odyssey without success. Actually, the piece over final credits was the only memorable piece. Need to rewatch, I must be mistaken, it should have been so much better.
Shane A. Bassett