Apollo 13: Lost Moon Apollo 13 discussion


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Apollo 13

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message 1: by Dodo (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:39PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Dodo After watching the movie several times, I bought the book. Absolutely fascinating. It tells so much more than the movie, as do most books. Definitely worth the read.


Michael Rudolf I heard Ron Howard say the movie had to be toned down because it was hard enough getting movie viewers to believe 10 things went wrong at the same time. They would never accept that 30 or more things went wrong at once, as really did happen.


message 3: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken Pelham Excellent book, excellent movie. One of the things that really fascinated me in the book was the explanation of how gravity guides the spacecraft. At each point and each moment of the flight to the moon, once the rockets are finished, the craft is subjected to a different pull of gravity. As it nears, it accelerates, as it departs, it decelerates. The speed at each point had to be calculated in advance precisely. Otherwise, you just fly off into space forever.


Danny Apollo 13 as a book and as a movie is absolutely superb. It's a truly inspiring human moment. It reminded the world of the dangers of leaving our own earth, which we take for granted (as did Columbia and Challenger), while simultaneously reminding of us why we were trying to leave our Earth and what the possibilities can be.

It also seems to confirm that humans (or Americans since we made the movie), for whatever reason, cling to tragedies in a much different way than we cling to triumphs. I mention this only because there is still no Apollo 11 movie and that triumph was the very best of the 20th century.


message 5: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken Pelham Danny,
On the other hand, Tom Hanks followed the Apollo 13 movie up by producing a dramatic series about the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs. I think it was on HBO. I haven't seen it, but I hear it's quite good.
There was also Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff, about Mercury...a great book.


Danny That is true, I forgot about the Right Stuff. I've seen the movie but have not read the book. But I imagine if your interested in the subject matter the book is good. I think your talking about From the Earth to the Moon. That was another Hanks and Ron Howard pairing (Apollo 13 was also) with great results. I have seen all 12 episodes of From the Earth to the Moon, if you haven't I would suggest it, it's quite good.


message 7: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken Pelham Danny wrote: "That is true, I forgot about the Right Stuff. I've seen the movie but have not read the book. But I imagine if your interested in the subject matter the book is good. I think your talking about Fro..."

"From the Earth to the Moon." Yeah, I think that's it. That's also the title of the old Jules Verne novel. By the way the original book title of "Apollo 13" was "Lost Moon", which I think is a better title.


Karla Goodhouse "From the Earth to the Moon" was based on the book "A Man on the Moon" by Andrew Chaikin. It's very good read. It tells the story of each mission and the reader gets to know all the astronauts. I highly recommend it if you're interested in the Apollo missions.

Personnally, I loved Lost Moon. The movie was very good, but the details in the book are amazing.


Danny Really, I haven't read the Jules Verne book either. I bet that one is interesting also. I agree with you that "Lost Moon" captures the feeling of the mission much more so than "Apollo 13." I imagine they changed the title after the movie came out to draw a connection for potential buyers. I know when I bought the book it was "Apollo 13," not "Lost Moon."

Ken, have you read "Man on the Moon," the book Karla mentions? I have not but I mentioned earlier I've seen (and own) the entire mini-series.

Karla, I agree with you, I loved "Lost Moon, Apollo 13" as well. As is usually the case the details in books generally blow the movie details out of the water.

A good mission by mission books is also "Failure is not an Option." Written by Gene Kranz the former flight director. It chronicles all his missions, you don't get to really "meet" the astronauts but you do get a feeling for how mission control operates during missions.


message 10: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken Pelham I haven't read "Man on the Moon." Sounds like a good one, and I love good books about a variety of sciences. One of my favorites, although a bit dated, is Carl Sagan's "Pale Blue Dot." It's not about the actual missions; it's about the planets of our system, and the stars and galaxies of the great beyond.

In the Jules Verne novel, the astronauts are fired from a gigantic cannon that's sunk deep into the earth. That would of course kill everyone aboard instantly, but oh well. He did, interestingly enough, have the cannon located in Florida, same as the ultimate NASA moon mission launches.


message 11: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken Pelham Also, take a look at "Rocket Boys", the terrific memoir by Homer Hickam about his high school days building rockets in a coal-mining town. The movie "October Sky" is based on it.


Danny A good book I read a few years ago is called "The Depths of Space" by Mark Wolverton. It's about the Voyager missions to Jupiter and Saturn. Quite amazing how even now NASA occasionally receives information from those probes. A testament to how great the minds, technology and production was of those probes and the overall goal.


message 13: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken Pelham Danny wrote: "A good book I read a few years ago is called "The Depths of Space" by Mark Wolverton. It's about the Voyager missions to Jupiter and Saturn. Quite amazing how even now NASA occasionally receives in..."

In "Pale Blue Dot", Carl Sagan described for perspective what landing a space probe on Mars is the equivalent of. He said it's essentially the same as firing a bullet from Houston and hitting a bulls-eye in Washington D.C. Think about that for a moment and you realize the scales and incredible ingenuity we have to overcome that scale.


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