Apollo 13: The Real Story
Special Edition, Collector's Edition
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This 3-DVD set details the Apollo 13 mission through the actual television transmissions, onboard film, press conferences and more. The set begins with an original documentary detailing the mission, and includes all of the television transmissions and onboard film, the midnight press conference detailing the emergency, additional press conferences throughout the mission, footage from the Apollo 13 review board investigation showing the nature of the explosion, complete coverage of training, suitup, launch, mission control, recovery and more. Over 10 hours of the real story of Apollo 13, through new digital transfers of archival film. This 3-DVD set brings you the story of the mission through the real stuff.
Move over, Tom Hanks. There's a new Apollo 13 in town.... from first disc to last, it's all first-class material. -- Collectspace, November 2004
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The set has all of the onboard film and TV footage from the mission (including cockpit footage of an actual cislunar burn), and has abundant footage of spacecraft assembly, testing, and rollout, which is always fascinating. There is simulation footage, footage of Lovell flying the always tricky LLTV, and even a brief snippet of Lovell and Haise doing T-38 proficiency flying.
For me, the most interesting parts of the set are the scenes of the MOCR narrated by EECOM Sy Liebergot, and the excellent panel discussion of Apollo 13 flight controllers at a 1995 Houston event. The press conferences are also more interesting than might be expected, particularly the post flight press conference with the three astronauts, the press conference featuring Gene Kranz and other controllers from April 15, 1970 and the press conference with Deke Slayton on April 16, 1970.
All told, this set has a running time over 12 hours long, but for those interested in spaceflight history, the time slips by quickly. This isn't for those with a fleeting interest in manned spaceflight, but for those who desire a complete accounting of the mission, this is the definitive DVD set, and I congratulate Spacecraft Films on the quality of the production.
For me the TV transmissions are the real bonus. While I agree with Laurenc that film archive quality is supierior to TV in the 1960's/70's, television is how we witnessed the Apollo miracle 'As It Happened' - live.
I think everyone's heart skipped a beat when finally the 'chutes of Apollo 13 opened live on TV.
This 3 disc set has it all - the press conferences and mission control film before and after the accident. Audio commentaries by NASA personnell, and of course all the onboard film and TV.
There's even a close look at the famous photo of the stricken CM taken just before re-entry, with the air-to-ground audio.
Mission. It's still a miracle these guys made it back. Spacecraft Films
Apollo 13 gives you footage not seen in any of the many documentaries that
are out there (There's a lot of them), including 16mm Film of the Service
Module Bay after it was discarded. Another home run with Spacecraft Films!
it's great and I'm looking forward to more spacecraft films in the future.
* = Not to be confused with the 1995 Universal Studios' theatrical motion picture starring Tom Hanks.
You won't find a more detailed and thorough account of the remarkable and nearly-tragic voyage of Apollo 13 than what is presented in this handsome set of DVDs -- that fact is for certain. Why? Because EVERY single scrap of available TV and film footage of the Apollo 13 mission is placed onto these three Digital Discs.
>> The complete TV transmissions and onboard film from the nearly one-week-long Apollo 13 mission (April 11 to April 17, 1970).
>> Coverage of the spacecraft's rollout, along with footage of: suit-up, launch, recovery, extensive Mission Control footage during the days following the accident, and footage of world reaction to the successful homecoming of the crew.
>> Exclusive commentary by Sy Liebergot, Apollo 13's lead "EECOM" (Electrical, Environmental, and Communications) Flight Controller. Plus additional commentary by Dave Mohr, Propulsion Designer and Engineer.
>> More than 12 full hours of material.
Plus, this DVD collection contains two informative documentary programs as well, which give a very good overview of the events that transpired before, during, and after the Apollo 13 flight.
One of the two documentaries was produced by NASA; while the other one was created for this DVD release by the folks at "Spacecraft Films", and was written and produced by Mark Gray. 100% of that program's video footage is comprised of original NASA video (TV and film). Lots of vintage archival Apollo XIII images are shown during that 43-minute documentary, which was put together in 2004 and is narrated quite capably by Linda Emond. A very pleasing and appropriate musical score also accompanies this "Main Program" located on Disc #1 of this set.
You can give your DVD Player's "Angle" button a good workout during the "Launch" segment located on Disc 1. Six separate angles of the Apollo XIII thunderous launch can be viewed and toggled through via the "angle" DVD feature on your remote control. There's even a 7th "composite angle" option, which places all six of the launch viewpoints on screen at the same time.
The "Launch" section also sports a Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround audio track, plus a DD 2.0 Commentary Track as well.
This DVD set is fascinating from start to finish, with good-quality digitally-remastered video footage throughout; and very good audio quality as well. The Menu designs are first-rate and classy too. A very well-done (and fitting) piano music score plays whenever any Menu is on screen. Plus: Each Sub-Menu includes a "Play All" option for continuous playback of all the material/programs that are featured on that portion of the disc.
Each of the three discs is single-sided and sports unique 'Apollo 13'-related disc art. A 4-page booklet is also included in this package, with detailed info on all the TV and film footage that can be found on each disc. One of the discs features a great-looking picture of Apollo 13 on the launch pad. A larger version of this same gorgeous pre-launch photo graces the front of the enclosed booklet as well.
Following is a detailed listing of the material that can be found within this 3-Disc DVD compilation .................
>> "Apollo 13: The Real Story" -- An original "Spacecraft Films" documentary constructed from the television, film, and audio record detailing the Apollo 13 mission, what was planned and how it unfolded. Provides an overview to the detailed material in this three-disc DVD set. (43 minutes long; Eight Chapter Stops included.)
>> Geology Training -- Footage of Apollo 13 Astronauts Jim Lovell and Fred Haise undergoing Lunar EVA geology training in Hawaii. Audio from pre-flight interview with Jim Lovell.
>> EVA Training -- Lovell and Haise training for their Lunar EVA. Audio description of the planned lunar surface activities. Silent film footage.
>> Crew Training -- Includes simulator work; plus LLTV (Lunar Landing Training Vehicle) work with Jim Lovell and T-38s with Lovell and Haise. Audio from air-to-ground during construction of the Lithium Hydroxide canister fix after the accident.
>> Equipment Checkout -- Checkout with the prime crew of the EVA equipment and the LM (Lunar Module). Includes LM leg deployment checks. Silent footage.
>> Saturn V Erection -- Stacking of the launch vehicle in the VAB (Vehicle Assembly Building). Audio is commentary by propulsion engineer Dave Mohr, discussing the S-II "engine-out" anomaly during the Apollo 13 launch.
>> Rollout -- Transfer of the launch vehicle from the VAB to Pad 39A. Natural sound of crawler transporter.
>> Launch Day -- Coverage of the traditional pre-launch breakfast, suit-up, and walk to the transfer van. Audio from flight director loop before launch.
>> Launch -- Multi-angle coverage of the launch of Apollo 13, at 1:13 PM on the afternoon of Saturday, April 11, 1970. Audio from public affairs officer, air-to-ground, and flight director loop. Flight director loop and air-to-ground audio continues to orbit. Second audio track features commentary by Dave Mohr, propulsion engineer.
>> Television Transmission #1 -- A short time after launch, while the spacecraft was still in Earth orbit, the crew's first television broadcast was made, showing views of the Earth from orbit.
>> Television Transmission #2 -- Transposition and Docking. TV transmission and 16mm data acquisition camera coverage of the transposition and docking maneuver.
>> Television Transmission #3 -- Features TV transmission from inside the Command Module on the way to the moon.
>> Television Transmission #4 -- Features TV transmission just before the accident.
>> Mission Control -- Coverage from Mission Control just before and just after the accident. Includes Mission Control footage as the wives of the astronauts arrive for the television transmission, Mission Control during the television broadcast, and immediately after the accident. Audio is commentary from Sy Liebergot.
>> Midnight Press Conference -- April 13-14 press conference outlining what was currently known about the mission and return.
>> Mission Control -- Coverage from Mission Control from during the flight home.
>> April 15 Press Conference -- Includes preparation for the "burn" as the Apollo 13 spacecraft comes around the moon. Conference also includes information on the progress of the Lithium Hydroxide canister solution, and also includes questions from the press.
>> April 16 Press Conference -- Deke Slayton answers questions about plans for the Apollo 13 entry and recovery, and the current status of the spacecraft and the crew.
>> Entry at Mission Control -- Extensive April 17 coverage from inside Mission Control, beginning at 140:20 GET (Ground Elapsed Time) through entry. Audio is commentary from Sy Liebergot.
>> Aboard Apollo 13 -- 16mm data acquisition footage from inside "Odyssey" (Command Module) and "Aquarius" (Lunar Module). -- NOTE: This section of the DVD is the section that contains the "real-time" audio from Apollo 13 and Mission Control before and after the accident. Absolutely fascinating stuff here, as the Flight Controllers grapple with the problems they're seeing on their computer screens and attempt to troubleshoot the difficulties in various ways. A very lengthy real-time audio section following the accident is included here, which is very nearly worth the price of this fabulous DVD collection all by itself (IMHO).
>> Mission Timeline -- Extensive timeline of mission events and the timeline of the accident and voyage home.
>> Service Module Separation -- 16mm data acquisition and 70mm still images of the Service Module after separation, showing damage to the SM spacecraft. Audio is air-to-ground.
>> Recovery -- Including operations surrounding the spacecraft's tension-filled atmosphere re-entry and footage from the carrier deck, including MOCR (Mission Operations Control Room) footage.
>> Medal Presentation -- Presentation of the "Presidential Medal Of Freedom" to the Apollo 13 astronauts at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on April 18, 1970.
>> World Reaction -- Footage from around the world showing the reaction to the Apollo 13 mission.
>> Post-Flight Press Conference -- From April 21, 1970.
>> Review Board Press Conference -- Initial press conference concerning the setup of the Apollo 13 review board.
>> Review Board Findings -- Extensive detail of the findings of the review board and their recommendations for changes for continued flight, including film shot during oxygen tank testing to re-create the accident.
>> Retrospective -- 1995 Johnson Space Center symposium, marking the 25th anniversary of the Apollo 13 mission.
>> "Houston, We've Got A Problem" -- Vintage 1970s-era NASA-produced film documenting the flight of Apollo 13.
Final "APOLLO 13: THE REAL STORY" Thoughts.........
This amazingly-comprehensive, in-depth, and well-put-together multi-disc DVD set will appeal to anyone with an interest in America's space program and, in my own opinion, can be regarded as a prized "collector's item" by those who enjoy video and DVD material of this nature.
If you want to see and hear every tiny little detail about the near-tragic Apollo 13 aborted moon mission, then this package of DVDs is the package to get.