← Back to Reviews

First Man

First Man

'First man' shows what Guinness book of world records then claimed was man's greatest achievement in the twentieth century---man's landing on the moon in 1969 . Such was the awe of the achievement even in the eighties when I was growing up that when I told about the claim to my friend at that time , he said that it was the greatest achievement in entire history of mankind not just the twentieth century .

Sadly , today's political climate when liberals have a finger in every pie means that the planting of the american flag on the moon could not be shown in the movie because that would reek of nationalism . Yet the race to the moon began as a challenge to american nationalism , as americans saw the then Soviet Union winning the contest in space missions . President JF Kennedy launched the programme to land man on the moon to restore american pride and glory .

The movie focuses on the man who first set foot on the moon , Neil Armstrong . Before his mission his wife makes him admit to his son the fact that there is a possibility that he may not make it back as many astronauts have been killed on missions . Indeed so many deaths have occurred that some people consider the money spent on the space programme a waste and feel that it could be better utilised eradicating poverty .

But when the mission is on everyone parks himself or herself in front of big screens erected to show the spectacle . And on coming back everyone has placards welcoming the astronauts home .

The moon mission is shown well . The roar and yellow plumes of the rocket engines , the spacecraft shaking as it lifts off , the beauty of the earth as seen from space---all is still awe inspiring . Neil Armstrong says his well rehearsed lines on setting foot on the moon---''A small step for a man , a giant leap for mankind.'' And then he has tears in his eyes at the edge of a crater as he throws his wife's trinket down the crater .

Photography and background music is satisfying . So is the acting by Ryan Gosling as Armstrong and Claire Foy as his wife and Corey Stoll as Edwin Aldrin the second man to set foot on the moon accompanying Neil . Even the arch rival soviets are shown acknowledging the achievement in their newspapers by publishing photographs of it . Maybe their left wing political heirs should learn something from them and acknowledge the achievement by allowing scenes like american flag planting to be filmed . Maybe then President Trump ( he has vowed not to see the film ) will watch the film too .

Verdict---Good .