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  Moonbug (documentary by Nichola Bruce)

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Author Topic:   Moonbug (documentary by Nichola Bruce)
Robert Pearlman

Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-06-2011 03:19 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

"It is a rare and wonderful experience to visit the men who went to the moon. Steve Pyke has done it – and thanks to Nichola Bruce's compelling film Moonbug, everyone else can come along." — Andrew Chaikin, author, A Man on the Moon

Bitten by the 'Moonbug', photographer Steve Pyke set out on a journey across America in his search to meet and photograph the Apollo space pioneers. A journey in which he was to meet the adventurers, risk takers and dreamers who were behind one of the most historic endeavors of our time.

From living rooms and moonscape deserts to Cape Canaveral, Steve captures these men in frank, revealing portraits while unraveling their very personal and divergent memories.

Documented by filmmaker Nichola Bruce with rare archive footage and an original score by Matt Johnson (The The), Moonbug is both a photographic road trip and an exploration of how photographs become signposts for history.

posted 10-07-2011 03:14 AM           Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I've got In the Shadow of the Moon and The Wonder of It All on Blu-Ray, and I still can't get enough of this kind of documentary. I wasn't aware of it before so thanks for the heads-up.

Any idea when it will be on DVD?


Posts: 4803
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 10-07-2011 07:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Looks like a good update of the BBC documentary of 1999, where they revisited the Apollo astronauts. Can't believe it's almost 45 years ago since Apollo.


Posts: 68
From: United Kingdom
Registered: Aug 2007

posted 02-19-2013 10:06 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for OWL     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have recently purchased Moonbug on DVD and found it a must see for all space flight enthusiasts.The film follows photographer, Steve Pyke on a journey around the USA photographing the Apollo astronauts and Mission Control members along with brief interviews.

It was filmed in 1998 and one of the highlights features Richard Gordon attending Pete Conrad's home.

Wally Schirra is also interviewed and shows off his knowledge of photography.

The DVD is obtainable in PAL format which is good for all us in the UK.

Editor's note: Threads merged.

posted 02-19-2013 04:37 PM           Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
In response to my query on Moonbug's Facebook page, someone (I assume connected with the project): "NTSC US version to launch soon."


Posts: 2024
From: Belfast, United Kingdom
Registered: Feb 2002

posted 02-19-2013 05:41 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Blackarrow     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Ordered and paid for... Belated thanks for drawing our attention to this, Robert!

Rick Mulheirn

Posts: 2457
From: England
Registered: Feb 2001

posted 02-23-2013 07:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Delighted to have been pointed in the direction of the documentary "Moonbug". I had never heard of it previously but having watched it this morning I can highly recommend it.

The photographer Steve Pyke chats with the subjects rather than interviews them but this approach coupled with the candid nature of the filming makes the film all the more endearing.

The conversations may have been all too brief but having met several of the guys featured it captures an essence of each pretty well. ...particularly Fred Haise.

My only criticism is harsh in as much as the film left me wanting more; more conversations with more astronauts.

I noticed other astronauts thanked in the credits including Al Worden and Charlie Duke; surely a missed opportunity to have filmed one or more crewmen from each flown Apollo mission.

The film served also to heighten my regret at not having met Pete Conrad and Wally Schirra.

Highly recommended.


Posts: 1571
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 03-11-2013 08:57 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I watched this last night and came away with a slightly different impression. Most of the astronaut interviews are excellent and left me wanting for more. There are some treasures in here, like Pete Conrad saying some of the moonwalkers never left the moon.

But there is too much fluff in the midst of these snippets. Almost every interview starts with close up shots of the photographer setting up his tripod and camera and his assistant unveiling a black back drop. Then we see them changing lenses, loading and rewinding film etc. He seems interested in his equipment and technique as much as his subjects. I don't agree with that, and I don't thnk an old twin lens reflex camera is noteworthy. Yet the photographer goes on and on about how it's his first camera and how he's loathe to use anything else.

The photos themselves are all of a certain style. You can't avoid that if you put a camera a foot from someone's face and use the same background for every shot. This method brings out the wrinkles and fine hair in people, but I don't think it gives much insight into their character.

Overall I'd say 7/10 for some great content that would be better if the filmaker and the photographer would get out of their own way.

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