First Man trailer was just released and Ryan Gosling looks great as Neil Armstrong, the American astronaut who became the first man to walk on the moon. The film is being directed by Damien Chazelle, the man who also directed Gosling in Oscar-winning La La Land. Set in the 1960s, the film is based on the book First Man: The Life of Neil A. Armstrong by James R. Hansen. Josh Singer has written the screenplay.
The film underlines how humongous a risk it was to send a manned mission to the moon. The scope for disaster was huge. NASA and the United States took this risk during the Cold War. The conflict was not just limited to the land now, it was now a war for the heavens. Both the world powers were showcasing their technologies to the world. The Soviet Yuri Gagarin had already been to space and returned unscathed. The ball was now in the American court.
The story deals with not just the actual launch and landing, but also the events that preceded the big event. Indeed, the preceding events seem to be the focus. Even for NASA, even then the most advanced space agency in the world, the job was incredibly difficult in terms of logistics, expertise and preparation. Neil Armstrong led the mission and Buzz Aldrin (played by Corey Stoll in the film) piloted the spacecraft and lunar module. Aldrin became the second man to land on the moon. He set his foot on the surface about 9 minutes after Armstrong did.
Claire Foy (the Queen of Netflix’s The Crown) plays Janet Shearon, the worried wife of Armstrong. “This isn’t just another trip, Neil. You’re not just going to work,” she says. Kyle Chandler, Jason Clarke, Shea Whigham, and Christopher Abbott also star in this film.
First Man releases on October 12, 2018.