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Space Station (DVD)
SPACE STATION is the first cinematic journey to the International Space Station (ISS), where audiences can experience for themselves life in zero gravity aboard the new station. The audience blasts off into space with the astronauts and cosmonauts from Florida's Kennedy Space Center and Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome to rendezvous with their new home in orbit 220 miles above Earth. SPACE STATION is a story of challenges, setbacks and triumphs and ultimately, the shared international victory of men and women whose dreams exceed the limits of life on this Earth.]]>
The partnership with NASA and IMAX films continues with a tour of the next step in space exploration: the International Space Station (ISS). Sixteen countries helped build this giant station (still being built upon the film's release in 2004). We see the first building blocks being constructed, including shots from inside the slick NASA shuttle launches to the friendly informalities of the Russian program. The crystal-clear pictures of the station and the Earth are the best aspects of this film. The entertaining footage delivers human elements, but sometimes the carefulness of experimentation makes for boring photography; a test of a super-cool jet pack has the astronaut moving mere inches. To the film's benefit, the narrator is Tom Cruise with a script tailored to his strong suits (the first line of "What an incredible sight!" is vintage Cruise). The film is also so light on its feet with a nice dose of music, including "Up on the Roof" and the Talking Heads "Naive Melody," that it makes up for the staginess of some of the scenes. The film was shown in 3-D in theaters but only 2-D for home video. --Doug Thomas
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Yes, this is a short film, but it's worth every penny for those who can give serious consideration to this amazing accomplishment of mankind. The scenes inside the Station, the many demonstrations of weightlessness, the occasional humor such as the weightless passing along of a woman along with the cargo as everyone (including the woman) smiled riveted my attention on the fact that this is an outpost of humanity in the vast isolation that surrounds us. How easy to feel small in that context.
The scenes inside the Station are so clear, I felt I could reach out and touch things, a feeling that gave me a better understanding of the living and working conditions in such cramped space. This film and the 3-D Hubble film are ones I feel are proud and vital additions to my collection.
This endeavor is a technical miracle, and the filming of it in such sharp detail is a blessing. That humans from different political divisions, philosophies and agendas could cooperate to bring this to pass is a strong and hopeful sign that humanity recognizes its essential homogeneity. Someday we may all be able to come together after all.
I recommend this film highly if you want to feel what it might be like in space and are interested in man's progress to the stars. I viewed it on my 55" LG 3-D TV with passive glasses and with my home theater sound on. As we used to say in the '60's, "What a trip!"
SPACE STATION 3-D is the best 3-D documentary ever made, and technically one of the best 3-D films ever made. It's all authentic. There's no CGI. The absence of CGI isn't noticed, the stereo photography is so good. Moreover, the IMAX blu-ray is the best 3-D transfer I've seen thus far. I don't see how it is possible to top it. Don't hesitate. BUY IT NOW.
In addition to absolutely clear footage of two early ISS missions, it featured IMAX coverage of a Russian Proton (~2.5 million pound thrust) mega-booster rocket launching the largest module of the ISS, interior and exterior shots of the Russian Soyuz and Progress spacecraft while docked to the ISS, and coverage of multiple American Space Shuttle launches to service the ISS.
Other wonderful features were included like coverage of missions 7 and 8 to the ISS which, while not filmed in IMAX, provided detailed hand over hand tours of the International Space Station and a good feel for the basic overall layout of the early space station. In addition an interesting documentary on the making of this IMAX production was included.
These features add up to just under 50 minutes of quality IMAX footage as well as the three excellent featurettes which are a bargain for under $10.00 from Amazon. This is definitely one to own and see again and again.