The Dish
***.3 GM
Starring: Sam Neill, Patrick Warburton, Tom Long, Bille Brown, Roy Billing, Taylor Kane, Genevieve Mooy, Kevin Harrington


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Guys took a rocketship and flew from the Earth all the way to this gigantic hunk of rock orbiting our miserable little mudball many thousands of miles away from our precious land. That is an unbelievable event that people don't even think about anymore, but it happened. Can you imagine what it's like to be one of the few human beings to EVER walk on alien soil?

This "charming little comedy whisks us back to that magical time" when this was just about to happen, and we get to witness the travails of a group of Australian technicians who work in a huge satellite dish that are going to pitch in with the broadcasting duties for the televising of the moon landing. Sam Neill leads the small crew, and Patrick Warburton is the NASA advisor.

I must stop right here and mention how amused I am by Warburton. I never really watched that "Seinfeld" gig of his, but his feinting-towards-dim burly casual demeanor just pleases me greatly. He's a guy I'd like to pal around with, and I bet he's fun at poker games.

The rest of the cast is amusing as well, and the intereactions between the Australian prime minister, the American ambassador, the Mayor of Parkes and the rest of the citizenry create an endearing picture of a community that you can't help but root for.

The most compelling aspect is that it recreates the sheer excitement and fascination with the moon landing that folks today missed out on. That's the bulk of the film, but it never stops feeling monumentally important. It rekindled my fascination with the space program and forced me to remember what an immense moment in human history that day in July, 1969 was.

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