Roving Mars (IMAX)
Imagine what it would be like to hop into a spacecraft, travel 300 million miles through outer space and land on Mars. Only “Spirit” and “Opportunity,” NASA’s famed and beloved rovers, can tell you what it’s really like. This fascinating documentary puts the viewer right in the middle of the historic and successful landing of these two mechanical rovers on the “red planet.” The excitement and enthusiasm of the NASA scientists as they build, test and launch these explorers is contagious. Add to that the IMAX format and digital surround sound, and you become more than an observer. I got chills watching the scientists’ honest reactions and celebrations when the rover successfully broadcast it’s first pictures. Because of the advanced level of animation, I often forgot that there wasn’t a camera in outer space watching the rocket boosters detach and following the module as it parachuted onto the surface.
In addition to the astounding images, this film offered a concise description of the mission, the information they collected and NASA’s findings concerning “life on mars.” The eventual goal is of course to send a person to Mars. Filmmakers commented on future Mars travelers saying someone in the audience may be inspired to become a member of that future team.
One caution — parts of this film contain loud explosions and sound effects that may be scary for young viewers. Otherwise, the film makes for a fun family outing or school field trip.