Apollo 11

Fifty years in the making

Fairly straightforward documentary by Todd Douglas Miller on the 50th anniversary of the July 1969 trip to the moon by Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins utilizes newly discovered archive footage and audio recordings (mostly of engineers repeatedly saying “it’s a go”) to create a meticulously conceived celebration.

One might think that after First Man and other films on this astounding extraplanetary mission, a documentary would seem a bit dry. But the film’s raw “you are there” immediacy, combined with a refreshing lack of explanation or recreations, make for a suspenseful and rewarding experience. Remember, these guys did all this with computers that managed only a small percentage of the processing power of your cell phone.

Conspiracy theorists will hate it. That’s a good thing. (93 min)