Review of Mission Control: the Unsung Heroes of Apollo, Directed by David Fairhead, produced by Keith Haviland and Gareth Dodds, at the 2017 Sarasota Film Festival (SFF) #mysff

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Mission Control: the Unsung Heroes of Apollo, Directed by David Fairhead, produced by Keith Haviland and Gareth Dodds, Sarasota Film Festival

Mission Control: the Unsung Heroes of Apollo is a compelling documentary of the engineers on the ground who planned and executed the most astounding feat in human history:  manned space flight.

Overall, 400,000 individuals came together to produce Apollo.  We have accomplished almost 60 years of space exploration from the first unmanned suborbital flights to the International Space Station.  Fairhead paired live interviews of key players with NASA footage to highlight the engineers’ roles and their relentless dedication to the mission.  While the astronauts basked in glory, the men in the white shirts and pocket protectors were in the trenches.  Their motto, created after the first astronaut fatality, was “Tough and Competent” and this film will leave no doubt in your mind that they deserve it.

This was not just an American endeavor.   Audiences worldwide followed our progress, celebrated our victories and cried with us when we failed.  The richness of our flight history strikes the hearts of all who long to slip gravity’s constraints and explore beyond the known world, regardless of their address.

The intensity of the engineering challenges is punctuated with endearing stories of the astronauts ‘  personal lives and training experiences.   The American space program is one of the most fully documented events in history.  Still, the public had no idea of the number of situations that arose that could have threatened the safety of the missions.  These were deftly managed by mission control, often when the problem was thousands of miles away and on hand materials were extremely limited.  They made it happen.

This film will energize your patriotism, make you proud and make you cry.  It opens April 14th in major cities and you will definitely want to see it.

Click to download 2017 Sarasota Film Festival Official Guide (14 MB)

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In almost 60 years of human space flight, astronauts have been the face of bravery but it was the engineers on the ground who made it all possible. This fascinating, in-depth documentary set on Florida’s space coast lets the men and women who built the space program tell their stories. Without them, the moon would have remained out of reach and American adventurism would have remained Earth-bound. Combining the excitement of “Apollo 13” and the behind-the-scenes drama of “Hidden Figures,” director David Fairhead uses new interviews and extraordinary NASA footage to craft a gripping chronicle of courageousness.


Section:    Spotlight
Genre:    Documentary
Category:    Documentary Feature
Internal Film Info
Internal Category:    Documentary Feature
Release Year:    2016
Runtime:    99 minutes
Type of Film:    Documentary Feature
Production Country:    United Kingdom
Original Language:    English
Cast/Crew Info
Director:    David Fairhead
Produced By:    Keith Haviland
Gareth Dodds
Screenwriter:    David Fairhead
Keith Haviland
Cinematography:    Ian Salvage
Editing By:    David Fairhead

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