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Corliss, Richard, and Jeffrey Ressner. "Hell of a Ride." Time 3 July 1995: 50.
The Time article is captivating. Corliss speaks highly of Ron Howard's film, and, what's more, the importance of films like these; his article makes everyone want to watch. It discusses the technical accomplishment of the film crew, replicating almost everything with incredible accuracy and detail, without lifting a single frame of film from NASA footage. Corliss also lauds the actors in the film, most notably Tom Hanks as Lovell, who conveys humanity and the notion of "ordinary Joe-heroism." This is point that Corliss seems to really want to hit home in his article: everyday people can do extraordinary things, and this film pays tribute to those "endangered American virtues of individual ingenuity and team spirit." In this era, with all the chaos of Vietnam, campus shootings, the Civil Rights Movement, "For inspiration there was nowhere to look but up."
Marcus, Paul. "Apollo 13." The Psychoanalytic Review 83.1 (1996): 125-28.
Marcus praises the creative and rebellious side of humanity captured by this mission and this film. The film's "simple message amounts to: Where there is no way, there is a will." The film inspires awe and power in the space program. The most compelling aspect of the film is that it is based on a true story, thus providing more profound symbolism than any fictional film.
Opt, Susan K. "American Frontier Myth and the Flight of Apollo 13: From News Event to Feature Film." Film & History 26.1-4 (1996): 40-51.
Opt first reviews the major events of the Apollo 13 mission then proceeds to detail how the story of this mission has been told across time, "beginning with the popular media coverage of 1970 and leading up to the current-day motion pictures success Apollo 13." She reveals that Apollo 13 was a focal point in the media in 1970. However, after NASA published the review board's findings, "reports about Apollo 13 dropped out of the popular media for almost 25 years," and there was a general shift in perception of the mission from success to embarrassment. In 1994 the mission re-entered popular media through Lovell's best selling book and then Howard's film. These new renderings of the mission shifted the perception back from embarrassment to "one of the greatest stories of human adventure." Overall, this article is helpful because it looks at something different than most, the effect of the mission on society, and how that effect changed over time through popular media such as the film and book on which it was based.
Pribram, E. Deidre. "Apollo 13: Rewriting History." Creative Screenwriting 3.1 (1996): 13-16.
The main obstacles of the script were twofold: "the specific task of making technical aspects of the space mission comprehensible (and entertaining); and the more encompassing issue of finding a dramatic storyline for the real-life events." The article specifically discusses how the writers went about overcoming these obstacles, with the majority of the article told from John Sayles' perspective, the individual who completely reshaped the script but didn't receive any credit.

See Also

Burnett, Eric. History through Film: Volume 1. Raleigh: Lulu Enterprises, 2008.

Cameron, Kenneth M. America on Film: Hollywood and American History. New York: Continuum, 1997.

Goldstein, Patrick. "Fly Me to the Moon." Premiere 8 June 1995: 82-88.

Middleton, Shannon. "Apollo 13: Space Race." History through Film. Ed. Eric Burnett. Raleigh: Lulu, 2007.

Rollins, Peter C. The Columbia Companion to American History on Film: How the Movies Have Portrayed the American Past. New York: Columbia UP, 2003.

Walker, Martin. "Apollo and Newt." Sight & Sound 5 September 1995: 6-8.

Video/Audio Resources

"Ron Howard." Archive of American Television.
Clips of three-hour interview done October 18, 2006.
Ron Howard. A&E Biography.
This biography profiles Ron Howard, director of the Academy-Award-winning film, Apollo 13. Giving us a more intimate look into the now top Hollywood director's life, we see him from where he began, as a "child actor who starred in two of TV's most popular vintage series" ( The episode includes "feature scenes from "The Andy Griffith Show," "Happy Days," "American Graffiti," and "Cocoon," and interviews with Griffith, Don Knotts, Henry Winkler, Nicole Kidman, Tom Cruise, and Tom Hanks, star of Apollo 13.

Online Resources

Price, Victoria. "Ron Howard." Film Reference.
Factual information and brief essay on the director.