Movie Mom

Movie Mom


Moon Movies

posted by Nell Minow

Salute the 40th anniversary of the Apollo moon mission with some moon-y movies (but my favorite is Monday’s DVD pick of the week, so stay tuned).

1. Moonstruck Cher won an Oscar for her performance in one of the most romantic films ever made, where an enormous full moon inspires unexpected love. “Loretta, I love you. Not like they told you love is, and I didn’t know this either, but love don’t make things nice – it ruins everything. It breaks your heart. It makes things a mess. We aren’t here to make things perfect. The snowflakes are perfect. The stars are perfect. Not us. Not us! We are here to ruin ourselves and to break our hearts and love the wrong people and die!”

2. Capricorn One A conspiracy theory favorite, this one has Elliot Gould, Hal Holbrook, and Sam Waterston (and O.J. Simpson!) in a story about a government plot to fake a moon landing after the real launch fails.

3. Apollo 13 Tom Hanks, Ed Harris, and Gary Sinese star in this gripping drama directed by Ron Howard about the heroic rescue operation after the Apollo 13 capsule suffered an explosion on its way to the moon. This is true heroism and problem-solving — and brilliant film-making as well.

4. Space Buddies The Buddies pups end up as stowaways on a trip to the moon in his family-movie favorite.

5. A Walk on the Moon Diane Lane is exquisite in this story about a lonely housewife who has an affair the summer that men first walked on the moon.

6. RiffTrax: Missile to the Moon – from the stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000! Mike Nelson and the Rifftrax guys provide the hilarious commentary for this story about a rocket to the moon with escaped convicts, a stowaway fiancée, and a moon-man. Here’s the trailer for the original film without the commentary:

7. H.G. Wells’ First Men in the Moon An anti-gravity paste transports Victorian explorers to the moon where they discover some bee-like creatures. Great effects by creature designer Ray Harryhausen.

8. Goodnight Moon and Other Sleepytime Tales Margaret Wise Brown’s night-time classic is beautifully filmed in this DVD collection of bedtime stories. “Goodnight, bears. Goodnight, chairs.”

9. Journey to the Moon: The 40th Anniversary of Apollo 11 Every family should watch this documentary about the real-life adventure that had Neil Armstrong and his team land on the moon and return home safely.

10. The Right Stuff Tom Wolfe’s book about the first group of astronauts is brilliantly filmed by writer-director Philip Kaufman, who recognizes the dream of a moon expedition as emblematic of the American spirit.



  • Your Name

    Love, love, LOVE “Moonstruck”! Cher deserved her Oscar! Heck, the whole darn cast deserved one, as did the screenplay, the film…. Loaded with great, repeatable lines:
    “Snap out of it!”
    “Cosmo, I just want you to know, no matter what you do, you’re gonna die like everyone else.”
    “I want you to stop seeing her…and go to confession.”
    “Your life is not built on nothin’! Te amo!”
    “Old man, you give those dogs another piece of my food and I’ll kick you ’til you’re dead!”
    “You’re a little boy, and you like to be bad.”
    “Little birds fly to the stars, I guess.”
    Many, many more. Great film!
    “Apollo 13″–the movie my wife and I saw on our first date. Fond memories, good film!

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    Thanks! Yes, “Moonstruck” is one of my all-time favorites. Hard to believe it was written by the same guy who wrote “Doubt.” It’s also a superb film, but could hardly be more different in theme and tone. I also think “Apollo 13″ is a brilliant movie (and should have won the Oscar for best film. I’ve watched both many, many times.

  • Marjorie Millner

    Yay Moonstruck! I was instantly transported, by your quotation, to that frigid NYC night after the opera, a few snow flakes falling, as Nicolas Cage’s character, Ronny, gives that impassioned speech and ends up ordering Loretta to get into his bed! There are so many great lines in that film. I have yet to see any of the others on the list. Shame on me! “A Walk on the Moon” and “Apollo 13″ are now on my short list.

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    I’m so glad, Marjorie! When you see them, let me know what you think!

  • http://www.classicmovieworld.com ClassicMovieFan

    That is a great article on Moon movies! How original. Moonstruck is of course awesome. As far as newer movies, Apollo 13 was brillaint and should have won. Any movie with Tom Hanks and then directed by Ron Howard has my vote. I even see on your list Tom Hanks again in “The Right Stuff”.
    I haven’t seen “Space Buddies” or “Capricorn One” but they look promising.

  • http://blog.beliefnet.com/moviemom/ Nell Minow

    Anyone who picks the screen name classicmoviefan is someone after my own heart! Many thanks for the great comment and I hope you will return often and let me know what you think about the movies you see.

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