DVD Countdown (DVD 7003310),
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Countdown

  • NR
  • DVD
  • 1 disc
  • Region 1 USA/CA (info)
  • After decades of working in commercial documentaries and television, Robert Altman got his first crack at Hollywood filmmaking with this dramatic adventure about the first manned space trip to the moon. The story, based on the novel by World War II pilot Hank Searls, concerns two NASA astronauts whose friendship is tested by the race with Russia to land the first man on the moon. The more confident and assured Chiz (Robert Duvall) is bypassed for Lee (James Caan), an apprehensive husband and father, yet together the two men learn to rise above their conflict and work to accomplish the miraculous task. Altman's first major Hollywood film is a more traditional drama compared to the director's later efforts, largely due to the fact that he was signed as a director-for-hire, which forced him to keep the narrative tight and focused. He began, however, to explore his ground-breaking overlapping dialogue techniques, which ended up being used in producer William Conrad's re-cutting of the picture. Despite being a more controlled project than is associated with Altman's maverick style, COUNTDOWN is a gripping work of entertainment that successfully blends science fiction with personal melodrama, featuring realistic performances from Duvall and Caan as the conflicted friends.
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  • Credits
    James Caan, Joanna, Cook Moore, Joanna Moore, Robert Duvall, Charles Aidman, Barbara Baxley, Steve Ihnat
  • Critic Reviews
    "A year before the actual event, the film has the an American making it to the moon in the race against the Russkies."
    Sight and Sound

    "A year before the actual event, the film has the an American making it to the moon in the race against the Russkies."
    Sight and Sound

    "A year before the actual event, the film has the an American making it to the moon in the race against the Russkies."
    Sight and Sound

    "A year before the actual event, the film has the an American making it to the moon in the race against the Russkies."
    Sight and Sound

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