They say you never forget your first, and that’s certainly the case for the moon. “First Man” tells the story of Neil Armstrong, the first man to walk on the moon. Deco’s Chris Van Vliet flew up to Atlanta, which is a lot like the moon, to talk with star Ryan Gosling and director Damien Chazelle.
Patrick Fugit (as Elliott See): “First man to walk on the moon, that’d be something.”
That would be something! In “First Man,” Ryan Gosling is Neil Armstrong, but this movie isn’t just about the American hero who was the first to walk on the moon. It’s about Neil Armstrong, the husband and father, in the years leading up to the Apollo 11 mission.
Luke Winters (as Rick Armstrong): “Mom, what’s wrong?”
Claire Foy (as Janet Armstrong): “Nothing. Your dad’s going to the moon.”
The movie reunites Gosling with his “La La Land” director, Damien Chazelle.
Damien Chazelle: “I’m lucky to work with this guy.”
Ryan Gosling: “He can’t get rid of me.”
Ryan Gosling (as Neil Armstrong): “We’re down here, and we look up, and we don’t think about it too much, but space exploration changes your perception.”
Chris Van Vliet: “Most of what most people know about Neil Armstrong is the guy who landed on the moon, and that was it. Ryan, as you were starting to learn about Neil Armstrong, the man, what did you find out about him?”
Ryan Gosling: “He was just an extremely humble person who refused to allow the attention to be focused on him.”
The movie takes us inside the space race and shows us just how dangerous these missions were.
Ryan Gosling: “I had no idea, just the amount of loss that he and his wife had experienced during these missions, the grief that they were suffering from, how closely to death he lived his life.”
Recreating the moon’s surface was no easy task. It turns out they used a rock quarry just outside of Atlanta.
Chris Van Vliet: “And who knew the moon was like half an hour from here?”
Damien Chazelle: “You can go drive to it by car. It’s not as hard as we make it look in the movie. It’s really just down the highway.”
Finding the location for the moon was one thing. Shooting there? That was another.
Damien Chazelle: “The light we built for the sun burned, not once but twice, and as soon as we figured out how to solve that problem, it started to snow, and then didn’t stop snowing for a week. We maybe didn’t have as many difficulties as Neil and Buzz had getting to the moon, but we had our little smidgen of hardship.”
Ryan Gosling (as Neil Armstrong): “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
And you can be the first of your friends to see “First Man” — or the last. It’s up to you. Deco is giving away passes for you and a friend to see “First Man” at any AMC theater any Monday through Thursday during its run. Enter to win by emailing your name, address, and phone number to firstname.lastname@example.org, and you could win.
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