First Man (2018) Review

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An in-depth look into the life of astronaut Neil Armstrong and his quest with NASA to get a man to walk on the moon, he became the first man to do that on July 20th 1969. We get to see the struggle in that legendary space mission eventually happening.

The film covers the years 1961 until 1969 as Neil Armstrong becomes a key man in the attempts to fly and land on the moon. At times the film does seem to move at a rather slow pace, however I felt that was essential to capture the process and the determination it took to get to Apollo 11. You never really think about everything that came before it and personally I found it all rather fascinating.

The men who died during training scenarios and trying to achieve the next step in landing on the moon. The hours of work and the obsession, Neil Armstrong had that obsession and it took him away from his family in many different ways. We find out about the daughter he had named Karen and how her death was a tough event for the family. His wife Janet really trying to hold everything together and support him while raising their sons Rick and Mark.

It really does help to highlight that success does not happen over night, it is a long drawn process where you must actually work hard to achieve your goals. Everything does build up so nicely towards the moment we have all seen before, the famous quote from Armstrong and it really was put in the film in such a great way. I did actually think about the US flag planting (I hadn’t heard about it being omitted before seeing the film) on the moon, I’m still undecided to whether it should have been left in? I do understand why they didn’t leave it in though.

Ryan Gosling is an actor that I really do enjoy and I felt this was another different type of film and role for him to take on. Claire Foy has had a fantastic few years and she seems to be making great choices and going from strength to strength with her different roles, this was no different. I felt Corey Stoll stole scenes as the outspoken Buzz Aldrin who very much liked to speak his mind and say the things others wanted to.

The space scenes at times really were visually stunning, the scene where they land on the moon and it goes completely silent was something else! I don’t really know why I found that so effective but it made me take a deep breath.

A slight change in direction from Damien Chazelle but I certainly think his music background created some great uses of the score in this film. For La La Land he became the youngest ever winner of Best Director for an Academy Award. So everyone really is going to take notice of his films. A brave step taking on First Man and I really do think he has managed to put together a very impressive film!

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10 thoughts on “First Man (2018) Review

  1. We just went to see this on Saturday. I was really really enjoying it… until the extreme close up and very shaky camera work made me nauseous! I’m a bit sensitive to motion sick, and they just didn’t let up with the camera work. It became a bit much for me and we had to leave about half way through. I’m hoping to see the latter half of it on a smaller screen sometime down the road! 🙂 Great write up, I agree that it was very nice to get more of the whole story.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Really glad you enjoyed it. I absolutely loved it especially after a second viewing on IMAX. I think some people wanted a more grand, cinematic biopic but I loved Chazelle’s personal focus. It really worked for me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thanks for your review! This movie was received positively by most people, but as far as I know it hasn’t been successful at the box office… I actually wanted to see it, but there are very few screenings already in my town (and very late in the evening, too late!)! :–/

    Liked by 1 person

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