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NASA: Ultimate Collection From Orbit to Beyond
NASA Ultimate Collection From Orbit to Beyond
Actor: From Orbit to Beyond: Ultimate Collection
Director: Various
Genres: Documentary
UR     2007     20hr 20min


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Movie Details

Actor: From Orbit to Beyond: Ultimate Collection
Director: Various
Genres: Documentary
Sub-Genres: Science & Technology, Space Exploration
Studio: St Clair Vision
Format: DVD - Black and White,Color
DVD Release Date: 08/28/2007
Release Year: 2007
Run Time: 20hr 20min
Screens: Black and White,Color
Number of Discs: 6
SwapaDVD Credits: 6
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
Edition: Box set
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English

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Movie Reviews

Good information, but has some shortcomings
Anton Karidian | Tennessee | 04/21/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)

"NASA: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION is a 6-DVD set that is lots of good information about the history of the American space program, from Mercury to the Space Shuttle, and seems to all be documentaries done by NASA from the 1960s through the 1980s. Still, I'm a little disappointed with it. I had hoped that this would contain all the films about the Apollo Program that are contained on the DVD set called Moon Race: The History of Apollo, but NASA: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION leaves out Apollos 4, 5, 8, 9, 10, and 12. This makes no sense to me, since this set does contain films on astronomical topics like the planets Mercury and Mars, the Universe, and so on that are badly outdated since they're from the 1970s. I mean, films about flights of exploration are timeless because they're of historical events and so are interesting from that standpoint, while films on astronomical objects are mainly of scientific interest and so need to be recent. When I got this DVD set in the mail, I was shocked that the FIRST disc makes it all the way through Apollo 11, so there's not a lot here on Mercury or Gemini either. Also, I believe there's another imbalance here, namely, the overwhelming focus on human exploration rather than unmanned probes. In my opinion the probes have actually been NASA's greatest success story.

Another aspect of this DVD set that is rather disappointing is the picture quality, which varies a good deal from bad to fairly good. At the beginning of each disc, St. Clair Vision says that they have digitally remastered the films, but explains that films do deteriorate over the years. I would expect this for films of the Mercury Program that are 50 years old, but a few of the films about the Space Shuttle from the 1980s look almost as bad! However, several of the films on this set do look markedly better than the average. And overall I think the picture quality here is watchable, but just don't expect to be wowed by these on your new high definition TV.

I should note that this 6-DVD set is also available as 2 separate sets called Nasa Collection-Volume 1 and The NASA Collection, Vol. 2. Also, there's a 5-DVD set called NASA: 50 Years of Space Exploration!, but I don't know exactly what those contain so I don't know if they have more on the Apollo, Gemini, and Mercury programs, nor do I know about their picture quality, but several reviews on that Amazon page complain about the picture quality, so my guess is that it's about the same as here. Then there's the great DVD sets from Spacecraft Films, but those are mostly original footage and usually not documentaries, so they're really a different kind of thing. And of course there are more recent documentaries like Public TV's terrific NOVA - To the Moon and Ron Howard's new one In the Shadow of the Moon that I hope to see soon. In sum, I gave NASA: THE ULTIMATE COLLECTION 3 stars because I subtracted one star for leaving out a lot on early space exploration, and subtracted another for the fair picture quality. Still, there is a lot of great information here, so if you're not mostly into the early years of space exploration and not too picky about image quality, these should be worthwhile for you. OK, here's the exact content of this set:

Disc 1 - First Years of Exploration
* Freedom 7 (Alan Shepard's Mercury flight)
* The Voyage of Friendship 7 (also Mercury)
* The World Was There (Project Mercury overview)
* The Four Days of Gemini IV
* This Is Houston, The Flight of Gemini VIII
* The Legacy of Gemini (Gemini overview)
* Apollo 11: The Eagle Has Landed
* Research Project X-15
* Bonus Feature: Earth from Space (10 minutes)

Disc 2 - Deep Space Discovery
* The Moon, Old and New
* Houston, We've Got a Problem (Apollo 13)
* Apollo 15: In the Mountains of the Moon
* Apollo 16: Nothing So Hidden
* On the Shoulders of Giants (Apollo 17)
* Skylab: The First 40 Days
* Skylab: The Second Manned Mission
* Images of the Universe
* Bonus Feature: NASA Launches (10 minutes)

Disc 3 - Advancing the Dream
* Four Rooms, Earth View (Skylab overview)
* The Mission of Apollo/Soyuz
* The Time of Apollo (Apollo overview)
* Houston, I Think We've Got a Satellite (1992 shuttle mission STS-49)
* The John Glenn Story (1962, 1 hour 20 minutes)
* Bonus Feature: Planetary Snapshots (3 minutes)

Disc 4
* Jupiter Odyssey (35 minutes, 1975, Pioneer 10)
* Mercury: Exploration of a Planet (35 minutes, Mariner 10)
* The Universe (30 minutes, 1976)
* New Look at the Old Moon (30 minutes, 1979, lunar science)
* Bonus Feature: Space Exploration Timeline and Radio Bonus

Disc 5
* Planet Mars (35 minutes, 1979, Mariner 9 and the Viking)
* Opening New Frontiers (30 minutes, 1982, first four flight of Shuttle Columbia)
* Space Shuttles (35 minutes, 1982)
* We Deliver (28 minutes, 1983, Shuttles 5 through 8)
* Bonus Feature: Solar System photos and radio episode

Disc 6
* NASA: The 25th Year (55 minutes, 1983)
* Launch and Retrieval of Satellites (30 minutes, 1984, Shuttles)
* Space Shuttle Challenger Accident Investigation and Return to Space (70 minutes, 1986)
* Toys in Space (30 minutes, 1986)
* Bonus Feature: Satellite Images and Interview with John Glenn (25 minutes)

Lots of Must Have movies in this Set!
J. Cheek | Orange County, CA USA | 10/21/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Some of these old NASA movies are absolute must have for space enthusiasts. The footage from the early Mercury missions is priceless. Seeing and hearing Alan Shapard as he blasts off into space is reason enough to own this collection."