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wd40
2011-Mar-13, 09:08 PM
Any initial opinions of "Apollo 18"? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_18_(film)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4RGhKzUUaME&feature=fvst

Or is it basically "The Blair Witch Project" in a vacuum?!

Selenite
2011-Mar-13, 11:47 PM
Or is it basically "The Blair Witch Project" in a vacuum?!

The only vacuum is in the skulls of whomever would actually pay to see this rubbish. Wonder if we can get Buzz Aldrin to punch the producers?

parallaxicality
2011-Mar-16, 10:11 AM
GIven that Buzz is serving as a consultant on Transformers 3, I think he's lost some credibility in that regard.

KaiYeves
2011-Mar-16, 09:42 PM
GIven that Buzz is serving as a consultant on Transformers 3, I think he's lost some credibility in that regard.
Just remember, though- to paraphrase the statement about the 800-pound gorilla, he's our crazy old man.

publiusr
2011-Mar-19, 06:06 PM
Hey, we might get some Saturn V CGI out of this.

KaiYeves
2011-Mar-19, 10:40 PM
Hey, we might get some Saturn V CGI out of this.
Didn't we already get that with Apollo 13?

Gemini
2011-Mar-20, 11:56 PM
I'm pretty sure that was actually a physical model.

KaiYeves
2011-Mar-22, 12:34 AM
According to the website of Digital Domain (http://www.digitaldomain.com/), the special effects company responsable, we're both right (kinda):

"While audiences assumed the rocket launch scene was lifted from historical archives, it was actually a series of shots created by Digital Domain through a combination of models & miniatures (the rocket and launch pad) and CG animation (smoke, fire and landscape)."

SRQHivemind
2011-Aug-04, 02:52 AM
Looks like a piece of forgettable dreck to me.
For one, the sheer idea that there could have been a Saturn V launch that "no one saw" is far too preposterous for my belief suspension system to handle.
Though to be fair when I first heard about this film and saw the trailer I'd come off of an Apollo 13/From The Earth To The Moon marathon.

It'll make my Netflix queue if it's passable. But it's films like this that keep sci-fi film and TV in the ghetto.

Amber Robot
2011-Aug-04, 05:16 PM
Isn't the entire premise flawed from the start? If there had been an Apollo 18 launch people would have at least known of the launch.

Yes, yes, I'm being too nitpicky. :p

Gillianren
2011-Aug-04, 05:19 PM
No, I don't think you are. I think even entertainment should pass the "basic logic" test.

R.A.F.
2011-Aug-05, 06:22 PM
No, I don't think you are.

No, not at all. The producers of Apollo 18 could have set the story in a fictional universe, but they chose not to.

Gemini
2011-Aug-07, 04:45 AM
I wonder if the Titan III could have been used for an EOR set-up i.e. one for the CSM (with the capsule and escape tower faired to appear as an unmanned vehicle), another with the LEM, and a third with the EDS.

I doubt this is the case for the movie.

KaiYeves
2011-Aug-07, 10:31 PM
I wonder if the Titan III could have been used for an EOR set-up i.e. one for the CSM (with the capsule and escape tower faired to appear as an unmanned vehicle), another with the LEM, and a third with the EDS.

I doubt this is the case for the movie.
Offhand: Would that ultimately be less expensive or more than a Saturn V?

Gemini
2011-Aug-08, 10:42 PM
Honestly, I'm the wrong guy to ask about cost analysis ( My engineering economy class was an uphill battle). However, my main aim here is to point a way that an Apollo lunar mission could appear to be a standard military launch instead.

EDG
2011-Sep-05, 02:28 AM
Isn't the entire premise flawed from the start? If there had been an Apollo 18 launch people would have at least known of the launch.

Yes, yes, I'm being too nitpicky. :p

There's that, and the much-touted "found footage" concept doesn't even work, since (from what I've read of the plot summary on its wikipedia page) there's no way for the footage to actually get back to Earth!

Noclevername
2011-Sep-05, 04:14 AM
There's that, and the much-touted "found footage" concept doesn't even work, since (from what I've read of the plot summary on its wikipedia page) there's no way for the footage to actually get back to Earth!

That's the sequel tag for "Apollo 19".

parallaxicality
2011-Sep-05, 06:51 AM
Wow you guys really pegged it.

Warning, F-bombs copiously dropped in this review (http://my.spill.com/profiles/blogs/apollo-18-audio-review)

Perhaps the best part of that review is that it linked to this (http://articles.latimes.com/2011/sep/01/entertainment/la-et-nasa-hollywood-20110901 ):


"Apollo 18 is not a documentary," said Bert Ulrich, NASA's liaison for multimedia, film and television collaborations. "The film is a work of fiction".

Oh.

Though to be fair, how many people think that NASA is engaged in a vast conspiracy to hide the entire night sky from the public again?

TJMac
2011-Sep-05, 12:34 PM
So, if I understand, this movie and its forgotten footage is an explanation of why we don't return to the moon? What's next, a movie about a Concorde passenger who saw, (pick one) a ghost, an alien, a skeleton, bigfoot, an invisible elf.....?

I overheard a conversation about this movie, and I just mentioned, "hey, you guys understand its impossible to secretly launch a rocket into space, right?" And one guy looks at me and says, "Well, they would do it at night." I was dumbfounded, and could not reply as I was trying to save my IQ points that were being sucked into the black hole of total and utter ignorance.

TJ

Paul Beardsley
2011-Sep-05, 04:44 PM
So, if I understand, this movie and its forgotten footage is an explanation of why we don't return to the moon? What's next, a movie about a Concorde passenger who saw, (pick one) a ghost, an alien, a skeleton, bigfoot, an invisible elf.....?

Yeah, those idiots who believe in skeletons! ;)


I overheard a conversation about this movie, and I just mentioned, "hey, you guys understand its impossible to secretly launch a rocket into space, right?" And one guy looks at me and says, "Well, they would do it at night." I was dumbfounded, and could not reply as I was trying to save my IQ points that were being sucked into the black hole of total and utter ignorance.

Come on, that's not entirely unreasonable. If they used inert fuel, there would be no blast to give them away...

R.A.F.
2011-Sep-05, 07:27 PM
Yeah, those idiots who believe in skeletons! ;)

Huh?? What about Geoff Peterson?

Gillianren
2011-Sep-05, 08:35 PM
So, if I understand, this movie and its forgotten footage is an explanation of why we don't return to the moon? What's next, a movie about a Concorde passenger who saw, (pick one) a ghost, an alien, a skeleton, bigfoot, an invisible elf.....?

A gremlin. And either William Shatner or John Lithgow.

KaiYeves
2011-Sep-05, 09:33 PM
Yeah, those idiots who believe in skeletons! ;)


I want to post a link to the scene from the Tintin book Destination Moon with the skeleton here, but there don't seem to be any scans of it online...

Starbuck
2011-Sep-07, 05:57 PM
So, if I understand, this movie and its forgotten footage is an explanation of why we don't return to the moon? What's next, a movie about a Concorde passenger who saw, (pick one) a ghost, an alien, a skeleton, bigfoot, an invisible elf.....?

I overheard a conversation about this movie, and I just mentioned, "hey, you guys understand its impossible to secretly launch a rocket into space, right?" And one guy looks at me and says, "Well, they would do it at night." I was dumbfounded, and could not reply as I was trying to save my IQ points that were being sucked into the black hole of total and utter ignorance.

TJ

Just FYI, they used stock footage of a Saturn V night (or maybe early morning) launch in the movie. Perhaps the implication is that SA-513 launched this mission, and NASA faked Skylab?

I thought the Soviet LK was pretty neat and seemed pretty accurate to what we know about that craft.

fagricipni
2011-Sep-11, 09:27 PM
It occurs to me there could be one problem with the movie that might not be immediately obvious; where's or who's holding the camera? Ie, certain footage should not be able to be taken. The most obvious is that no pictures of the Apollo landings from outside the spacecraft exist -- the problem being how would one get the camera down there without landing on the moon in the first place. Another example comes to mind of the some of the scenes from the movie Apollo 13 -- which does not claim to be footage taken at the time of the events it depicts -- which would require a camera traveling with the spacecraft but not attached to either one because both spacecraft are moving relative to the camera. Another one that the makers of the movie Apollo 18* may not have thought of is that there are only two people on the moon; if both astronauts are in the scene and the camera is moving to track the astronauts, then WHO is holding the camera?

* I have to say "the movie" Apollo 18 because I always thought that this (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo-Soyuz_Test_Project) was Apollo 18.

HenrikOlsen
2011-Sep-11, 10:01 PM
I think that's a part of the willing suspension of disbelief that's been in movies since day 2, when the hero and the villain battle at the edge of a cliff, do you wonder what coincidence caused a film crew to be at the bottom of the cliff as they were doing it?

And yes, if this is all framed as if the movie watched was filmed entirely by the crew, with no added shots, then it's a problem, but only then.

Gillianren
2011-Sep-11, 11:37 PM
My understanding is that it claims to be found footage.

fagricipni
2011-Sep-12, 01:30 AM
And yes, if this is all framed as if the movie watched was filmed entirely by the crew, with no added shots, then it's a problem, but only then.

As Gillianren points out the producers of the movie Apollo 18 claim it is found footage.

I used some of the scenes in the movie Apollo 13 as examples of what could have been done wrong in the movie Apollo 18, because they would be quite problematic had the producers claimed the movie Apollo 13 to be footage taken at the time of the events it depicts. I have no problem with those scenes in the movie Apollo 13 because the producers honestly present the movie as being a dramatization of the events of the actual Apollo 13; indeed, those scenes improve the movie Apollo 13, but those types of scenes should be impossible in the movie Apollo 18.

I have not yet seen the movie Apollo 18, so I don't know if the producers of that movie made that particular mistake; I was hoping, though, that someone who had could tell us if they did.

Paul Beardsley
2011-Sep-12, 03:23 AM
The "found footage" idea isn't that different to the old literary device of someone writing an account of something while it is happening. H.P. Lovecraft took this to (intentionally?) amusing extremes in "Dagon" which ends with the viewpoint character informing us that he can hear the monster coming up the stairs, then writing, "The window!" (from which we assume he's desperate enough to jump out of the window, but not too desperate to let us know).

parallaxicality
2011-Sep-12, 06:12 AM
Horror employs this tactic in many different ways. It's a useful horror device because it denies the certainty that someone will live to tell the tale, or the security of an omniscient narrator. The characters in the story are as clueless about what happens next as the reader. In literature the tactic is to use epistolary style, as both Dracula and Frankenstein use, as well as Lovecraft and Stephen King (If you think the end of Dagon is extreme, try reading "The Rats in the Walls", which ends with the narrator going insane and screaming in Gaelic- Stephen King aped this (he loves Lovecraft) in "The End of the Whole Mess", which has the narrator developing a degenerative mental disease as he writes and then forgetting how to type). On TV/Radio the tactic is "mock live", such as the 1938 War of the Worlds broadcast or Ghostwatch. "Found footage" is simply this tactic applied to cinema.

Jason Thompson
2011-Sep-12, 02:50 PM
Just FYI, they used stock footage of a Saturn V night (or maybe early morning) launch in the movie.

Or, more precisely, they used stock footage of the only night time Saturn V launch.

I wonder where the landing site was supposed to be, since it might not have a suitable night launch wiindow either....

Gillianren
2011-Sep-12, 04:03 PM
I have no problem with found footage as a concept, provided I think it's going to be used well. Nothing in this film's advertising has convinced me it's being used well, largely because nothing in the advertising has convinced me that anything in it is done well at all.

Cycle
2011-Sep-17, 12:11 PM
I dont see why any country would want to launch a secret mission to the moon.
That would mean that Nasa was just a bottomless pit for taxpayers money.

Terran
2011-Sep-22, 09:48 PM
I dont see why any country would want to launch a secret mission to the moon.
That would mean that Nasa was just a bottomless pit for taxpayers money.
There are those who argue that "bottomless pit for taxpayers money" is basically the definition of NASA ;)

Gillianren
2011-Sep-23, 02:35 AM
They have a very different perception of what "bottomless" means.

Paul Beardsley
2011-Sep-23, 01:45 PM
There are those who argue that "bottomless pit for taxpayers money" is basically the definition of NASA ;)

[citation needed]

Orlagh Maher
2011-Sep-23, 01:48 PM
[citation needed]

Google 'nasa a waste of money' and select pretty much any response.

BigDon
2011-Sep-29, 12:36 PM
So, if I understand, this movie and its forgotten footage is an explanation of why we don't return to the moon? What's next, a movie about a Concorde passenger who saw, (pick one) a ghost, an alien, a skeleton, bigfoot, an invisible elf.....?

I overheard a conversation about this movie, and I just mentioned, "hey, you guys understand its impossible to secretly launch a rocket into space, right?" And one guy looks at me and says, "Well, they would do it at night." I was dumbfounded, and could not reply as I was trying to save my IQ points that were being sucked into the black hole of total and utter ignorance.

TJ

Easy there TJ. They weren't even the first to come up with this one.

Charles Stross already did this with his modern retelling of the Cthulu Mythos. The Great Old Ones leave "obelisks" around the galaxy near life worlds for the simple fact that they are intellectivores. They sleep until a world shows potential to harvest. Sucks to be that world.

But think about this. How would the story 2001 a Space Odessy be different if the luner colonists:

A: used a tunnel instead of an open pit.

B: Realized it was an extraterrestrial signalling device waiting for someone to dig it up and expose it to sunlight.

My honest opinion?

Military coups and recoups, and at least one world war would go down before anybody would be allowed to activate it.

Not a single responsible world leader would go, "Gee whiz! Let's fire this thing up and see who answers!".

The only correct answer would be to re-bury it.

Gillian - It's like the One Ring. These kinds of things *want* to be found!

A behavior not seen in:

Car keys

Reading glasses

Socks, (fifty percent of the time).

korjik
2011-Sep-29, 03:20 PM
Easy there TJ. They weren't even the first to come up with this one.

Charles Stross already did this with his modern retelling of the Cthulu Mythos. The Great Old Ones leave "obelisks" around the galaxy near life worlds for the simple fact that they are intellectivores. They sleep until a world shows potential to harvest. Sucks to be that world.

But think about this. How would the story 2001 a Space Odessy be different if the luner colonists:

A: used a tunnel instead of an open pit.

B: Realized it was an extraterrestrial signalling device waiting for someone to dig it up and expose it to sunlight.

My honest opinion?

Military coups and recoups, and at least one world war would go down before anybody would be allowed to activate it.

Not a single responsible world leader would go, "Gee whiz! Let's fire this thing up and see who answers!".

The only correct answer would be to re-bury it.

Gillian - It's like the One Ring. These kinds of things *want* to be found!

A behavior not seen in:

Car keys

Reading glasses

Socks, (fifty percent of the time).

While 'responsable world leaders' (ha, couldnt type that with a straight face) might just want to bury it, I would give it about 80/20 that any group of explorers would immediately expose it to the sun. Maybe 50/50 if it was a construction crew.

fagricipni
2011-Oct-15, 12:51 AM
Just FYI, they used stock footage of a Saturn V night (or maybe early morning) launch in the movie. Perhaps the implication is that SA-513 launched this mission, and NASA faked Skylab?

Is it possible that someone writing this movie had the idea that while a night launch would not allow one to hide the fact that something was being launched, it could hide the exact type of rocket being launched; I know it doesn't work that way -- if nothing else the setup of the Saturn V on the launch pad takes so long that it would be noticed during a daylight period --; but maybe they didn't know that?

SkepticJ
2011-Oct-15, 05:27 AM
Charles Stross already did this with his modern retelling of the Cthulu Mythos. The Great Old Ones leave "obelisks" around the galaxy near life worlds for the simple fact that they are intellectivores. They sleep until a world shows potential to harvest. Sucks to be that world.

Exactly, it's a retelling of the Cthulu Mythos, not how actual, incredibly advanced alien intelligences would behave. Would, could Martians eat human blood? Not likely.


But think about this. How would the story 2001 a Space Odessy be different if the luner colonists:

A: used a tunnel instead of an open pit.

B: Realized it was an extraterrestrial signalling device waiting for someone to dig it up and expose it to sunlight.

My honest opinion?

Military coups and recoups, and at least one world war would go down before anybody would be allowed to activate it.

Not a single responsible world leader would go, "Gee whiz! Let's fire this thing up and see who answers!".

The only correct answer would be to re-bury it.

Not at all. Well, assuming they were rational. If they weren't rational, and since we're talking about humans this is not an insignificant possibility, they might act as you suggest.

If they thought about it rationally they'd see that:

If the aliens left a signaling device on the Moon, they just as easily could have left a honking huge coil gun (or whatever) inside the Moon to ruin Earth's day.

Or a von Neumann war-machine inside an asteroid wrapper at the Earth-Moon L4 or L5 points watching our civilizations across the millennia using optical phased arrays splayed across the surface of the asteroid.

Or they could've dropped nanobots onto prehistoric Earth that could've sculpted our ancestors' genes to keep them from ever evolving into us. Or infected our central nervous systems during the same period, and we're witless puppets, our very sensory impressions of the real universe filtered to become only what they want us to see.

So many, many possibilities.

No, a Monolith would be a sign of peace.

BigDon
2011-Oct-15, 05:33 PM
No, a Monolith would be a sign of peace.

Wow. Not only do I *not* come to the same conclusion, but nothing personal, I would use any and every means to stop you. Encluding inflicting personal extinction upon you if that was the only way. You are not worth the risk.

Paul Beardsley
2011-Oct-15, 05:55 PM
I once stumbled upon a buried monolith. I exposed it to sunlight.

Fortunately it wasn't of alien origin.

It wasn't very big either.

SkepticJ
2011-Oct-15, 07:02 PM
Wow. Not only do I *not* come to the same conclusion, but nothing personal, I would use any and every means to stop you. Encluding inflicting personal extinction upon you if that was the only way. You are not worth the risk.

What about my reasoning doesn't hold up to you?

Wouldn't you agree that everything I wrote is physically possible? For what reason would a Monolith destruction-trigger be preferred over simply leaving a watchful weapon itself?

You wouldn't build the machine from Contact either, would you?

fagricipni
2011-Oct-16, 04:08 AM
You wouldn't build the machine from Contact either, would you?

The machine from Contact was a Trojan Horse; if we hadn't helped them build their wormhole to Earth, it would have taken them 50 years from an event on to them intervening; 25 years to see it, another 25 to reach Earth; instead we had to help them build the wormhole.


What about my reasoning doesn't hold up to you?

Wouldn't you agree that everything I wrote is physically possible? For what reason would a Monolith destruction-trigger be preferred over simply leaving a watchful weapon itself?

My reasoning about having us build a their Trojan Horse for them doesn't apply if they have already physically been here and thus been able to leave a machine(s) behind.

SkepticJ
2011-Oct-16, 09:11 PM
The machine from Contact was a Trojan Horse; if we hadn't helped them build their wormhole to Earth, it would have taken them 50 years from an event on to them intervening; 25 years to see it, another 25 to reach Earth; instead we had to help them build the wormhole.

That's true, but it still wouldn't make rational sense to fear the Contact aliens because:

If they know how to create machines that can form wormholes, surely they could send an interstellar craft at close to the speed of light to Earth if they wanted to. Sending us the plans at c using radio and having us build it ourselves would only save a few years vs. just coming from Vega themselves.

And if they wished us harm, they could send that craft plunging into Earth at near light-speed.

Instead of flying themselves, they shared their wormhole-machine technology.

I don't buy the conceit that all hyper-advanced intelligent beings would be benevolent, but this sort of behavior would be difficult to spin any other way.

Githyanki
2011-Oct-17, 05:41 PM
We all know Apoll 18 never happened because the Moon-landings were faked because I saw it once in a James Bond movie and James Bond wouldn't lie to me.


I saw Apollo 18 and it just didn't do it for me. I was more interested in the life-type of the aliens rather than the, "Horror" aspect or the fact it was filmed "Blair-Witch"-style.

BigDon
2011-Oct-17, 06:13 PM
Okay, since I've cast myself as Gen. Jack D. Ripper allow in my defense the fact that I went from age 15 to age 50 pretty much continiously reffereeing role playing games. It's solidly in my nature to see the imp of the perverse in just about most situations. And if I could we'ed be splitting a pitcher of black lager while having this conversation. So that said:

All of your replies are way too anthropocentric to be a likely response. Simply because you are an anthropod. All the stories and news you have on them, the very idea of them, came from other anthropods. You and I can only think the way we do. It's physics. Same for ET.

And because of uncertainy and the law of unintended consequences you can't reduce the odds of disaster to fifty-fifty.

Even the 2010 story would end up with a Jupiter at least 77 times more massive than before. I'm sure that would have been no problem for the Monolith builders to adjust for. Too bad in OUR system it ejected all the other planets...

SkepticJ
2011-Oct-17, 07:30 PM
Even the 2010 story would end up with a Jupiter at least 77 times more massive than before. I'm sure that would have been no problem for the Monolith builders to adjust for. Too bad in OUR system it ejected all the other planets...

Would it have to?

What I got from reading 2010 is that the mass of Jupiter doesn't change--conservation of mass/energy and all that, Jupiter just gets artificially compressed beyond what its own self-gravity can accomplish to ignite proton-proton fusion and become what would be a naturally impossible star.

How do the Monoliths do that? Who knows.

But it means that the dynamics of the solar system would stay similar to how they are now. Lucifer would intercept less asteroids than Jupiter because of its smaller cross section, and the radiation from the mini-star would influence the orbits of asteroids and comets, but these are pretty trivial.

AstroFilmmaker
2011-Oct-18, 09:11 PM
No, not at all. The producers of Apollo 18 could have set the story in a fictional universe, but they chose not to.

If it took place in a fictional universe, then it wouldn't be any different from any other science-fiction alien attacks story. ;)

I commend them for adding a spin to things, but doesn't make it any better. I think it's an attempt to help audiences connect to it more. Sure they could have made it in a fictional universe, but the fact that it's an 'apollo mission' and it's 'found footage' just proves they're trying to ride the success of Blair Witch and Paranormal Activity. It wouldn't have worked for producers if it took place in another world, another reality, or another time frame from that of which we are familiar with.

It does seem awful though.

elly12
2012-Aug-30, 05:00 AM
It's a pretty good movie, period. It has a fairly original storyline. If you like mocumentaries & sci-fi/horror.....& if you enjoyed The Blair Witch Project & or Paranormal Activity, then you'll probably like this film. Actually, I think it's better than either of those films.

Vietnam Software Outsourcing (http://savvycomsoftware.com)

R.A.F.
2012-Aug-30, 03:58 PM
...if you enjoyed The Blair Witch Project & or Paranormal Activity, then you'll probably like this film. Actually, I think it's better than either of those films.

That's really not saying much.



edit to add....and welcome to the board, elly12.

R.A.F.
2013-Sep-04, 01:57 PM
Major bump...didn't think this deserved it's own thread...


Just noticed yesterday that Apollo 18 is now available on Netflix...so I watched it, and have a few random thoughts about it.

First off, the surface scenes weren't that bad from an FX standpoint, but there were a few "oddities". Such as the Lunar Rover sounding like a 30's flivver, (or perhaps a lawn mover). Having any sound (other than the astronauts talking/breathing/etc.) completely destroyed the illusion that they were on the Moon's surface.

They didn't have any lights, which seemed strange, until you get to the part of the movie where they go into the crater. Then they "use" the flash? on their camera to "see". Of course the reason for this is obvious...an occasional flash makes it seem more suspenseful, since you couldn't always see what was going on.

As far as the "lost footage" aspect?, that's pretty much destroyed early in the movie as there are point of view shots where no camera could possibly be present...and there's still the question of how "they" got the footage, given events in the movie.


But all this is secondary to the main idea I took away from this movie....the evil government is EVIL...there are even shades of Capricorn 1, here. Although the whole idea of the movie conflicts with hoax believer dogma, they most certainly would like the portrayal of the "evil government" as that does fit into their wacky worldview.



My recommendation?...it's worth one viewing, since it is an oddity, and only to see the "on the surface" FX.

Availability on Netflix doesn't hurt, either...but that's it. I would not waste my time on a second viewing.

parallaxicality
2013-Sep-04, 04:19 PM
Just saw Europa Report. It's also on demand and it's better than Apollo 18 by a few orders of magninitude.