“Every time we get a chance to get ahead they move the finish line. Every time.”
- What is this movie about?
A team of African-American women provide NASA with important mathematical data needed to launch the program’s first successful space missions. Based on a true story.
- Why should you watch it?
A fantastic story told in a fantastic way. The movie is based in real events which is really refreshing as what we know is the final event, launching a man into space, but what we didn’t know (probably) was what was behind it, what aspects made it happen, the people who were involved and as it was 1961 there were not only white men involved but also black women.
So we find ourselves in a story about discrimination against not only black people but also women. So these black women not only had to fight because they were women but because they were black too. And it is an interesting story because they are really smart women working at the NASA, something that didn’t happen every day. So besides the fight of these women to prove what they were capable of, there is also the final destination, which is something that hadn’t been done before. So we are taught a bit of history too.
All three main actresses do an amazing job portraying these strong women. I specially like Taraji P. Henson who already got our attention in the show Empire. the main characters are supported by a bunch of well-known actors playing the secondary ones, which only supports more the work of the three leading ladies.
An interesting movie to learn more about the people that we don’t see in the news, about their hard work that make civilization moving forward, about what happens when you are different and don’t have the same rights as the others just because of the color of your skin.
- Did you know?
– Colors were key to setting the films mood. “Cold” sets at NASA – where calculations took place – were filmed in sterile whites, grays, and silvers; sharply contrasted against the “warm” sets of Kevin Costner’s office and the ladies’ homes.
– When Taraji P. Henson signed on for the lead role, she met with the real-life Katherine Johnson, who was 98 years old, to discuss the character she was about to portray. Henson learned that Johnson had graduated from high school at age 14 and from college at age 18, and was still as lucid as anyone years younger. After the film was screened for Johnson, she expressed her genuine approval of Henson’s portrayal, but wondered why anybody would want to make a film about her life.
– The issue with the bathrooms was not something Katherine Johnson experienced, but rather lived by Mary Jackson. In fact, it was this incident that resulted in Jackson ranting to a colleague which got her placed on the wind tunnel team. Katherine Johnson simply refused to use colored restrooms.
– Several of the control console props in the Mercury Mission Control set were originally built for the Mission Control Room set for Apollo 13 (1995). They were modified for use in the later films, including The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1 (2014) and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 2 (2015).
– On the day that the scene was filmed in which Paul Stafford (Jim Parsons) is speaking to the NASA engineers in the Space Task Group office about needing to develop the math for re-entry, there was an extra face in the crowd. Mark Armstrong, son of Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong, had been invited by actor Ken Strunk to have a cameo appearance in the scene, and joined the other actors representing the NASA engineers.