First Man is a first-rate movie about America’s most revered astronaut

October 12, 2018

First Man movie

First things first: If you’re interested in space, don’t hesitate before seeing the new movie about Neil Armstrong’s life, First Man. I’m passionate about space history, NASA, commercial space, and the whole enterprise of trying to push things and people off this planet and deeper into space. And I absolutely loved this movie. It opens Friday across the United States.

This is a movie of two parts. The first storyline pertains to Armstrong and his family life, his relationship with his wife Janet, a daughter named Karen who died young, and his two boys, Rick and Mark. This part of the film is often a bit melancholy, as Armstrong struggles with Karen’s death and how to communicate the risks of his profession with his family. The humanity of these scenes will appeal to some, but not others seeking a purely action movie. I found the scenes between Ryan Gosling, who does a fine job as Armstrong, and Claire Foy as his wife, to be compelling.

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