Apollo 13 | 2000
Documentary about Apollo 13, the third lunar landing mission. Apollo 13 lifted off on April 11, 1970 with little fanfare. The public's interest in the moon had waned following Apollo 11. The mission was proceeding on plan when a routine maintenance operation -- a stir of the cryogenic oxygen tanks -- sparked a short circuit that caused a powerful explosion. Both the crew and Mission Control didn't know what to make of it at first, as the system had a quadruple failure, something nobody had ever bothered simulating -- because a quadruple failure would mean almost certain death. Mission Control determined the fastest way to get the astronauts back home was to use "free range trajectory," meaning orbiting the moon and using its gravitational force to propel the ship to Earth. The crew was forced to make a series of complicated navigational decisions using the stars -- not computers -- as their guides. After 5 days and 22 hours in space, the Apollo 13 crew began re-entry.