'NASA: A Journey Through Space' [Blu-ray+Digital]
(John Glenn, Neil Armstrong, John F. Kennedy, et al / 2-Disc Blu-ray + Digital / NR / 2019 / Mill Creek Entertainment)
Overview: On May 25th, 1961, President John F. Kennedy made a historic speech where he pledged to send astronauts to the moon before the end of the decade.
Eight years later, on July 20th, 1969, Apollo commander Neil Armstrong stepped out of the lunar module and made a giant leap for mankind - a step that symbolized one of the most remarkable feats in human history.
From that moment on, the exploration of our universe has achieved unimaginable feats with hundreds of missions stretching light years into the distant galaxy.
This exciting documentary series takes viewers into the past, present and future of NASA.
Blu-ray Verdict: Sadly, and from the off, what could have been, indeed should have been a wondrous and insightful series is chock full of blindingly factual mistakes and, at times, constantly mismatched video with audio (aka narration).
I mean, in a review that should be all about the actual series (which I promise I will get too in this review), didn't anybody fact check anything here? Come on now, was the Editor allowed to select any pretty image rather than go to the trouble of using footage that matched the narration?
It would take longer than it took watching the series to properly document all the errors - and, trust me here, I'm nowhere close to kidding - but a prime example of one of the worst errors is stating that Neil YOUNG was the first to walk on the Moon!
How did this get past script review? Did the narrator make the mistake? Did the sound engineer also not know it was wrong? Did no one proof the finished edit?
Other blatant errors include stating the explosion on Apollo 13 was caused by a short in fuel cell number three. It was actually caused by a short in a LOX tank and this has been well documented for a VERY long time. I mean, seriously, did they never even watch the movie 'Apollo 13'?
Oh, and they also claim hydrogen leaking from a solid rocket booster caused the loss of Challenger. It's a SOLID rocket booster and so used SOLID propellant. There was NO hydrogen!
The lack of editorial review causes EVERYTHING to be suspect in this series which is a grand shame for 'NASA: A Journey Through Space' is actually, in its parts, a rather good and solid work of cinematic showing.
Sadly though with all its mistakes it's so suspect I refuse to call it a documentary having watched it through because it appears absolutely no documents were researched! It's more like someone wrote a script from flawed memory of long-past TV reports and complete and utter B-movie mythology!
As for the promised review, well telling it like it is, regardless of the aforementioned mistakes, and within 'NASA: A Journey Through Space' we take a journey into space and embark on a historic journey through NASA's storied human spaceflight program.
As we watch along we get a glimpse of what the first American astronauts saw, the ambitious missions to the moon, and the reusable era of the Space Shuttle that eventually led to the International Space Station.
Finally, and for a look into the future, they end this with a segment on NASA's massive new rocket that may one day take astronauts to Mars.
However, and in closing, the only reason to watch this series is if you already know NASA history and want a drinking game. Take a drink every time there's an error in narration or visual. You'll probably be drunk before the first episode ends!!
Parts 1-3: The History of Flying & the Space Race / Operation Lift Off / Shooting for the Moon
Parts 4-7: The Apollo Missions / After a Giant Leap / The Shuttle & Living in Space / The 21st Century & Beyond.
This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.78:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.