The Right Stuff


"The first American into space is not going to be a chimpanzee. I want test pilots!"   - President Eisenhower


release year: 1983
genre: space exploration drama
viewing setting: home Bluray 3/24/20 and home DVD, 11/22/16 and 11/6/12 and 8/9/10 and 1/1/08 and 6/24/02, home laserdisc 11/1/98

synopsis: This is an event-by-event retelling of the birth and early phase of U.S. space exploration, from Chuck Yeager breaking the sound barrier in 1947 to John Glenn orbiting the earth in 1962.

impressions: This was a long but detailed accounting of the saga of the Mercury astronauts - the first Americans in space. From it, I learned about all the risks and stress that these men and their families went through. It had good humor, tension, and bonding as the guys put aside their differences and learned to think and act as a team over their years in the Mercury program.

acting: Several people did good jobs; memorable were Ed Harris, Scott Glenn, Dennis Quaid, Fred Ward, Sam Shepard.

notable link: NASA's Astronaut biographies

final word: Worth seeing, more than once if you're a fan of human spaceflight.

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