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Apollo 18

A movie directed by Gonzalo López-Gallego

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APOLLO 18 Breaks Ground As A Guilty Pleasure, At Best

  • Jan 8, 2012
  • by
Rating:
+3

APOLLO 18:

 

As I’ve said elsewhere, I think it’s hard not to enjoy a quality conspiracy, and mankind’s only manned off-world moon missions have been the subject of quite a few.  First, there’s the one that claims that the United States never went to moon, that it was all faked, shot on a soundstage somewhere in California, Arizona, or New Mexico.  Then, there’s the one that claims the Apollo missions were actually the cover story; what really happened was that we went to moon to discover who had been there before.  Of course, there’s another one – related and similar – that claims the photography from the moon has been censored or edited to remove evidence of the moon’s original colonization by a master race.  Then, there’s the fact that the moon is hollow.  And then there’s this other one …

 

I think you get the point.  For ever story about the moon, there are probably dozens of others, and they all point to some grand conspiracy relating to NASA’s cover-up of either (A) life out there or (B) things are not what they seem.

 

What APOLLO 18 does it does reasonably well, and that’s basically to present a classic conspiracy story.  It takes the significant elements of several of these conspiracies – that some Apollo missions were done in secret, that mankind did in fact find life on that presumed lifeless rock – and stirs them all up into one hefty mix.  The makers presume that the footage from one of these secret missions was somehow miraculously returned to Earth, leaked onto the internet, and spliced together into a complete whole.  As is the case in these “found footage” films, it has a tendency to be all ‘herky’ and ‘jerky’ cam coverage, and APOLLO 18 is no exception to that rule.  If you look too closely, you may see the strings being pulled behind the curtains, but, out front, it’s just your basic “boy-meets-monster” story.  There’s nothing wrong with it on that level; don’t ask too many questions, and you’re bound to be entertained, if only mildly.

 

The disc includes a good handful of alternate endings which, sadly, gives the sense that the creators weren’t entirely sure which way they wanted to go with the yarn they were spinning.  While I found that a bit of a disappointment, I also shrug it off because, minimally, I admire them for their creativity.  There are also a handful of deleted and/or extended scenes worth viewing; while they don’t add much to the basic premise, there are a few that flesh out these characters (or “victims”, if you prefer) quite well.  There’s also a commentary, but I’ll freely admit I haven’t listened to that yet.

 

Recommended mostly as a guilty pleasure.  One time viewing, at least, for the novelty of it all.

APOLLO 18 Breaks Ground As A Guilty Pleasure, At Best

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January 11, 2012
Man, this had so much potential. In my eyes, it's an epic failure of a horror flick; unsuccessful on just about every given level, save for ambition; which it has plenty of. But come on; it's just about impossible to make a truly frightening movie in space that actually spends most of its time with the camera pointing at the damn planet. The point of found-footage, in my experience and opinion, is to create a sense of realism, and you very well can't come close to doing that if nobody can relate to your choice of location let alone your boring, one-dimensional protagonists.
 
January 08, 2012
great observations about the conspiracy bit. I liked the ambition behind this one, it just fails as an 'authentic footage' thing. Seems like this style of filmmaking is becoming increasingly popular.
January 09, 2012
I think the "found footage" films have always had an audience, but, yes, they're probably on the rise right now. It seems, with each month, there's something new of this variety out either on the screens or new to DVD.
 
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More Apollo 18 reviews
review by . September 03, 2011
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review by . September 17, 2011
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review by . September 15, 2011
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   Apollo 18      This is a movie with tremendous potential.  Unfortunately, it was ruined by an insistence upon making the entire movie appear as bad as the actual videos sent from the moon were in the early 1970s.  There was no reason for this.  Ron Howard didn’t have to do that when making Apollo 13.  He understood that it was a film meant to entertain.  That purpose cannot possibly be served by making every scene virtually unwatchable. …
review by . September 03, 2011
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Ed ()
Ranked #12
What? You don't know enough about me from the picture? Get a clue! I'm a graduate from the School of Hard Knocks! You can find me around the web as "Trekscribbler" or "Manchops".   … more
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Genre: Drama, Horror, Thriller
Release Date: 22 April 2011 (USA)
Screen Writer: Brian Miller, Cory Goodman
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