Mission Possible

Ambika Shaligram
Friday, 19 July 2019

8 Days to the Moon and Back, a documentary commemorating 50 years of man’s landing on moon, will be screened tonight

Science and faith are incongruous to say the least. But Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin (alongwith Michael Collins) who were the first to conquer the final frontier reposed their trust in both. Aldrin’s request, which he made after landing on moon — to ask every person listening in, whoever and wherever they may be, to pause for a moment and contemplate the events of the past few hours and to give thanks in his or her own way — asks us to broaden our views. 

For a generation who was privy to the momentuous, historic mission of Apollo 11, only through textbook, watching the dramtic recreation of ‘giant leap of the mankind’ was nothing short of goosebump inducing. The documentary, 8 Days to the Moon and Back, which premieres tonight (Saturday) at 8 pm on Sony BBC Earth, seamlessly blends archival photographs, footage from NASA and CGI to bring a slice of history alive with Rufus Wright (Armstrong), Jack Tarlton (Aldrin) and Patrick Kennedy (Collins). 

The images of the Lunar Module (Eagle) gliding through the space towards moon and the astronauts describing their first glimpse of it as ‘desert of US, only more prettier’ have you right on the edge of your seat, peering in, thrilled at the antcipation of things to unfold. The documentary packs in a complete punch with splendorous sights of the space, the visuals from the ‘Houston’ at space station, the close-ups of the astronauts exposing their vulnerabilities, audio records of their conversations and the hurdles encountered during the mission. It’s enough to pique the curiosity of the layman and for the geeks, 8 Days to the Moon sprinkles interesting nuggets of information here and there. For instance, did you know that the astronauts clicked 122 pictures of the moon? Or that Saturn V rocket stands 36 feet high? Or according to NASA protocol, Aldrin was supposed to be the first man on moon, but Apollo 11 changed the protocol? 

There are visuals of veteran broadcast journalist Walter Cronkite and CBS commentator Eric Sevareid debating how to describe the feeling of “being up there”. Truly, are there any words? Experience the spectacle instead. 

8 Days to Moon and Back premieres as a part of Moon Landing Special on Saturday, 20th July 2019 starting 8 pm on Sony BBC Earth

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