The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Some international students at Texas A&M have been struggling to pick up groceries because of limited transportation options from campus to H-E-B and Walmart on Texas Avenue.
Former A&M employee sentenced to 5 years for hiding restroom camera
The employee, who worked for Transportation Services, was sentenced Friday
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • June 24, 2024
Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) reacts in the dugout after Texas A&M’s game against Tennessee at the NCAA Men’s College World Series finals at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 24, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
United they fall
Ian Curtis, Sports Reporter • June 24, 2024

No one involved with Texas A&M baseball ever believed they were going to lose.  Despite being down 6-1 to Tennessee by the end of the...

Texas A&M pitcher Kaiden Wilson (30) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Tennessee at the NCAA Men’s College World Series finals at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Saturday, June 22, 2024. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Winner-take-all
June 23, 2024
Eats & Beats at Lake Walk features live music and food trucks for the perfect outdoor concert.
Enjoying the Destination
Cara Hudson, Maroon Life Writer • June 17, 2024

For the history buffs, there’s a story to why Bryan and College Station are so closely intertwined. In 1871 when the Texas Legislature approved...

Chris Hemsworth as Dementus in Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga.
Review: ‘Furiosa’ is a must-see
Justin ChenJune 4, 2024

My jaw dropped open in 2016. Rarely in life does that happen, but the viewing experience of “Mad Max: Fury Road" was something to behold....

Texas A&M outfielder Jace Laviolette (17) reacts in the dugout after Texas A&M’s game against Tennessee at the NCAA Men’s College World Series finals at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Monday, June 24, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
United they fall
June 24, 2024
Texas A&M pitcher Kaiden Wilson (30) delivers a pitch during Texas A&M’s game against Tennessee at the NCAA Men’s College World Series finals at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Saturday, June 22, 2024. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Winner-take-all
June 23, 2024

“First Man” an awkward but accurate portrayal of Apollo 11

Lead actor Ryan Gosling and director Damien Chazelle come together to make First Man an immersive space epic that tells the story of Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon.
Photo by Creative Commons

Lead actor Ryan Gosling and director Damien Chazelle come together to make ‘First Man’ an immersive space epic that tells the story of Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon.

“First Man” tells the story of Neil Armstrong in the years leading up to his historic moon landing. The first part of the film deals with the emotional aspects of training to be one of the Apollo astronauts, while the second part portrays in vivid detail Apollo 11’s journey to the Sea of Tranquility.
The film starts off slow. Beginning with Armstrong’s time as a test pilot and engineer, the movie jumps awkwardly between his home and work life. Often, abrupt cuts skip over indeterminate amounts of time. The camera seems to stumble haphazardly through random events in Armstrong’s early career. One aspect of his astronaut training is shown in detail, while the rest of the intensive process is neglected almost entirely. Everything is portrayed with a layman’s interest. The first part of the film was boring, unemotional and slightly confusing.
The second part of the movie, on the other hand, suffered none of the shortcomings of the previous portion. This part of the film showed Apollo 11 in glorious detail, depicting everything from the astronauts’ ascent to the cockpit, to the launch, to the LEM landing and Armstrong’s legendary first step — all with a sense of wonder, awe and accomplishment. Honestly, this second half felt like a completely separate movie, and it mostly made up for the underwhelming first half.
The camerawork for most of the film was atrocious. Most of the movie is composed of extremely tight shots and shaky-cam effects. The whole thing feels like a late 90s Jason Bourne-esque action flick, which is odd considering the subject matter. I think the cinematographer must have been trying to create some level of raw realism, or intimacy with the characters, but if that was the idea, it failed horribly. There were times when the camera was so tight on someone’s face that I wasn’t even sure what I was looking at. When literally the entire screen is filled by Ryan Gosling’s cheek, I think it’s time to take a few big steps back. These extreme closeups, combined with the almost constant shaky-cam technique, did little more than frustrate me and induce some slight nausea.
Acting-wise, there’s not a lot to mention. The film portrays Armstrong and the other astronauts as big strong men who have trouble expressing their emotions. As a result, there isn’t a lot of emotional warmth being thrown around on screen. I love Ryan Gosling as an actor, but his Armstrong was a little too stoic and stunted to be interesting. The best performance of the film came from Claire Foy as Mrs. Armstrong, and even she didn’t seem fully developed as a character.
If you’re a space history buff, then I would absolutely recommend seeing this movie. I was pleasantly surprised by the historical accuracy of the film. There are, of course, artistic liberties, but the film stayed mostly true to life. However, if you’re not into space, I don’t know that it’s worth the money. I hated the camerawork, was underwhelmed by the acting and found the first part of the film to be jumpy and boring. However, the movie’s stunning depiction of the moon landing itself almost made it all worth it.

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