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Lloyd Owen, Ryan Robbins, Warren Christie

Officially, Apollo 17, launched December 17th, 1972 was the last manned mission to the moon. But a year later, in December of 1973, two American astronauts were sent on a secret mission to the moon fu... read more read more...nded by the US Department of Defense. What you are about to see is the actual footage which the astronauts captured on that mission. While NASA denies its authenticity, others say it's the real reason we've never gone back to the moon. -- (C) Official Site

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23% liked it

41,947 ratings


24% liked it

70 critics

DVD Release Date: December 27, 2011

Stats: 3,785 reviews

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Flixster Reviews (3,785)

  • June 30, 2014
    During the final NASA mission to the moon, the astronauts find an abandoned Soviet lander and begin to suspect that they are not alone. It's very safe to say that I am not a fan of the "found footage" genre, but I am a fan of the old NASA space missions and the intriguing trailer... read more tempted me to give Apollo 18 a try. Because of the nature of the way the space missions were documented the faux documentary style actually feels a lot more genuine than most examples and the visual effects recreating the classic 60s space technology design gives the film a nice feeling of authenticity. The problem with Apollo 18 is, unsurprisingly, that it is a found footage movie. This means that it is poorly paced, badly edited and has little characterisation or plot for that matter. Not to mention that the suspense is non-existent thanks to the fact that the film has about as much atmosphere as the moon does and the revelation of what is behind these mysterious events is just another lame horror movie cliche. It's a shame really because the idea of a lost Soviet moon mission is quite interesting but as it stands, if you've seen the trailer you've seen everything Apollo 18 has to offer.
  • October 5, 2013
    "There's a reason we've never gone back to the moon."

    Apollo 18 is as dull a "found footage" movie as I have ever seen, which is sad because the premise is one that could of brought about a lot of great originalities for the genre, but instead, this just chose to steal scenes fr... read moreom other movies. All in all, this ends up being nothing more than a prequel to a movie like Invasion of the Body Snatchers filmed like "found footage" with every scene ripping something off.

    So the premise of the movie is this, although our government tells us they stopped sending astronauts to the moon after Apollo 17, in fact there was actually an Apollo 18 too. This movie is made up of the footage of that mission. It starts out like any other Apollo mission, but once on the moon things get weird and two astronauts are in a struggle with something they don't understand.

    This movie is lazy, cliched, derivative, boring, dull, and just plain bad. There's nothing for any fan of horror or film in general to walk away with and that's when you know a movie has failed its audience. Everything is completely forgettable and in the end, even with a short runtime, the movie overstays its welcome. Pass on this one for sure.
  • January 13, 2013
    dreadful piece of trash, moon rocks are really aliens, do me a favour.
  • August 31, 2012
    A great concept with a poor execution. Sadly, the makers ambition outweighs their talent here.
  • July 14, 2012
    Nice idea but awful execution. It had ideas from better films and failed to get anywhere near as good as them! Even at 80mins it felt way dragged out.
  • fb100000716838411
    June 27, 2012
    Apollo 18 is the story of astronauts going to the moon and they get attacked by weird space crab things and boom, that's the plot. It's also presented in the found footage perspective and by now I think it's time the found footage genre just take a 20 year hiatus. It's been overu... read moresed since Paranormal Activity made it cool again and it just needs to die. The thing I hate about the footage in this film is that they try to pass it off as real. We all know it's just for the movie, but the director comes straight out and says "Oh yeah, it's real stuff. I don't have a logical explanation for how I recovered it from the moon, but it's real." The film is also very predictable. It sets up for a fake scare, nothing happens, then a really cheesy "scare" will happen. It's been done before. The characters in this movie have no point other than to be the meal for the things attacking them. They aren't relatable, there was no reason to want them to live, and they were just boring. When stuff is happening and the guys are being attacked, most of the time the camera just shows static and all we hear are the actors trying to provide genuine yells of terror even though they couldn't act to save their lives. I also didn't like the ending. It was just a big anti-climax considering the film tries to make it seem like the Moon is the most dangerous place ever. It's nothing new and it's just a boring, generic movie.
  • April 15, 2012
    It was in 1979 that the talented Mr. Ridley Scott struck cinematic gold with a science-fiction horror masterpiece. (If you are a living, breathing, human being, I'd expect you to know what film I'm referring to, so I won't bother to mention the title.) His message was in the ta... read moregline ("In space no one can hear you scream"), but it was more effective from watching the film. It would be downright plagiarism to use the same tagline as director Ridley Scott did in 1979, so the message of the movie is clear throughout: In space, no one can hear you scream. No one can help you, and if something happens, oh well. Even though there haven't been all too many horror films that take place in space, APOLLO 18 makes us feel as if we've been bombarded with that theme countless times. It seems so clichéd, and the use of the "found footage" technique doesn't help. This technique was used in other horror and science fiction films such as PARANORMAL ACTIVITY, THE LAST EXORCISM, [REC], and CLOVERFIELD to enhance the believability of the story and increase the level of fear and tension. It worked in those films quite effectively, but not in this one at all. Had this been a more psychological horror film about three men who got stuck on the moon, it probably would have worked great. When the obstacle in the plot is extra-terrestrial life, the laughing factor is enhanced for anyone over twelve years old.

    I have to give points to APOLLO 18 for being watchable, at the least. The story wasn't at all convincing; nor were the titles at the beginning informing us that this was truncated footage from thirty-seven years before, just found and leaked to the web. It even negates the entire story it conveyed in the end by giving us the official reports of the Apollo 18 mission. Somehow, there was a "so bad, it's good" type of entertainment that isn't usual for a film made as poorly and carelessly as this. That said, it was entertaining enough for its seventy-minute length, but the mistakes are so manifest that inadvertently works better as a comedy than a horror movie.

  • fb528166828
    February 5, 2012
    Many films have tried to emulate the success of THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT, some more successfully than others, but few have failed on the same level as APOLLO 18. Transplanting the horror from the woods of Maryland to the moon of all places seems like an interesting idea on paper, ... read morebut the film is so desperate to maintain its level of documentary realism that it sacrifices all fundamentals of horror filmmaking, and instead teases audiences with a payoff that never really comes, aside from a few ineffective, hackneyed jump scares.

    Whether by design (BLAIR WITCH) or as a result of technical limitations (JAWS), often the unseen terror in movies is the most frightening, yet APOLLO 18â(TM)s creators take the â~less is moreâ(TM) concept entirely too far, leaving a film where the threat is so elusive that it becomes almost non-existent, and anytime anything interesting is allowed onscreen the found footage aesthetic is shoved down our throat with such force that one canâ(TM)t help but disengage completely. Possibly budget constraints played a part, but obscuring the scares with egregious shaky-cam and digital over-exposure of the footage achieves nothing except undoubtedly frustrating viewers. Add in the laughably clichà (C)d dialogue delivered by woefully amateur performers, and APOLLO 18 is disappointing on more or less every level. BLAIR WITCHâ(TM)s lightning in a bottle success has been in some way replicated by films willing to adapt the formula, such as CLOVERFIELD and the recent CHRONICLE, not by merely taking the same tone and narrative beats to a new location, even one as full of potential as the lunar surface.
  • February 5, 2012
    This movie certainly had its moments and did make me jump in places but overall it is a slow and boring movie for majority of the time. the camera work isvery make compared to that of the blair witch project and i didnt care for it much then either!
  • January 24, 2012
    There's a reason we've never gone back to the moon.

    Not that good. This film could have been like an episode of the X-files yet it was more dull than that. It had potential but really the film failed miserably in scaring the viewers or even explaining in detail certain things. ... read moreBig fail.

    Decades-old found footage from NASA's abandoned Apollo 18 mission, where two American astronauts were sent on a secret expedition, reveals the reason the U.S. has never returned to the moon.

    In December, 1973, the crew of the previously-cancelled Apollo 18 mission is informed that the mission is a go, though it has now been deemed a top secret Department of Defense mission. Commander Nathan Walker (Lloyd Owen), Lieutenant Colonel John Grey (Ryan Robbins) and Captain Benjamin Anderson (Warren Christie) are launched towards the Moon to place detectors to alert the United States of any impending ICBM attacks from the USSR.

    Grey remains in orbit aboard the Freedom Command/Service module while Walker and Anderson land on the moon in the lunar module Liberty. While planting one of the detectors, the pair take samples of moon rocks. While attempting to sleep, the pair hear noises outside and a camera captures a small rock moving nearby. Houston (Andrew Airlie's voice) claims the noises are interference from the ICBM detectors. Anderson finds a rock sample on the floor of Liberty despite having secured the samples. During further exploration they discover footprints that lead them to a Soviet LK lander nearby, finding it functional but blood-stained. Anderson follows tracks leading into a dark crater and finds a dead cosmonaut. Walker queries Houston about the Soviet presence but is told only to continue with the mission.

    The following day the pair find that the flag they had planted is missing. Their mission complete, the crew prepares to leave the Moon but the launch is aborted when Liberty suffers violent shaking. An inspection reveals extensive damage to Liberty and non-human tracks that Walker cites as evidence of extraterrestrial life. Walker feels something moving inside his spacesuit and helmet and is horrified as a spider-like creature crawls across the inside of his helmet. Walker disappears from view and Anderson finds him unconscious outside of Liberty. Walker later denies the events. A wound is discovered on Walker's chest; Anderson feels, and removes, a Moon rock embedded within him. The pair find themselves unable to contact Houston or Grey due to increased levels of interference from an unknown source.

    Anderson speculates that the true intention of the ICBM warning devices is to monitor the aliens. The pair also increasingly wonder if the devices are the source of the interference; Houston had assured them that this was not so. Walker shows signs of a developing infection around his wound and he becomes increasingly paranoid. The mission cameras capture the rock samples moving around in the interior of Liberty, revealing that the aliens are the moon rocks (or indistinguishable from the real rocks). Increasingly delusional, Walker attempts to destroy the cameras within Liberty but accidentally damages the system controls, causing Liberty to depressurize. Realizing the Soviet LK is their only source of oxygen, the pair travel to the LK lander in their lunar rover. Along the way, Walker attempts to run away, believing he should not leave the Moon because of the risk of spreading the infection to Earth. Anderson crashes as he attempts to stop Walker.

    Anderson awakens and tracks Walker, finding him at the crater where they found the cosmonaut. Walker is pulled into the crater by the creatures. Anderson gives chase, using his strobe light to illuminate the area. The rocks start to sprout their spider-like legs, causing Anderson to flee to the Soviet LK. Using its radio he makes contact with USSR Mission Control who connect him to the United States Department of Defense. The deputy secretary of the department informs Anderson that they will not allow him to return to Earth, admitting they are aware of the situation and fear he is also infected. Anderson manages to contact Grey and they make arrangements for Anderson to return to Freedom. Anderson prepares the lander for launch but it is attacked by Walker. Before Walker can breach the vehicle, he is swarmed by the creatures, which crawl into his helmet and cause his blood to splatter onto the lander.

    Anderson launches the LK lander successfully with the intent of arriving near Freedom and entering it via spacewalk. Grey is informed that Anderson is infected. Grey is ordered to abort Anderson's rescue or communication will be ceased, rendering him unable to return to Earth. Inside the lander, the reduced gravity causes small rocks within the Soviet craft to float. Anderson realizes with horror that some of the rocks are actually alien creatures. Anderson is attacked and infected by the creatures, preventing him from controlling the vehicle, leaving it headed toward Freedom. Grey yells to Anderson that he is coming in too fast. The space footage ends abruptly, implying a collision.

    The footage cuts to before the pilots' mission, showing them having a barbecue with friends and family. The "official" fate of the astronauts is given, describing them as having died in various accidents that left their bodies unrecoverable. An epilogue explains that many of the rock samples returned from the previous Apollo missions are unaccounted for.

Critic Reviews

David Edelstein
September 6, 2011
David Edelstein, New York Magazine/Vulture

It's 80 minutes of dead air. Full Review

Peter Howell
September 5, 2011
Peter Howell, Toronto Star

Boredom sets in long before the last muted shriek. And who cares about the astros? We never get to know them anyway. Full Review

Joel Brown
September 5, 2011
Joel Brown, Boston Globe

For most horror fans it will be kind of a snooze. Full Review

Eric D. Snider
September 4, 2011
Eric D. Snider,

The source of the creepy events, when it's finally revealed, is profoundly dull, like a forgettable episode of The X-Files or Fringe. Full Review

Mark Olsen
September 3, 2011
Mark Olsen, Los Angeles Times

The film takes a startlingly long time to rev up, and even at less than 90 minutes feels thin and at moments like it is playing for time. Full Review

Mike Hale
September 3, 2011
Mike Hale, New York Times

Accomplishes something the world wasn't really crying out for: it recreates the tedium of watching the later Apollo missions. Full Review

Joe Leydon
September 3, 2011
Joe Leydon, Variety

Despite stretches of skillfully sustained suspense, Apollo 18 ultimately comes across as little more than a modestly clever stunt. Full Review

Keith Phipps
September 2, 2011
Keith Phipps, AV Club

Make no mistake, Apollo 18 is a *terrible* movie. Full Review

Nick Schager
September 2, 2011
Nick Schager, Village Voice

Reconfirms that most entries in the "found-footage" horror subgenre should remain lost. Full Review

Keith Staskiewicz
September 2, 2011
Keith Staskiewicz, Entertainment Weekly

Apollo 18 fails to stay with you because, like the cratered satellite on which it's set, it has no atmosphere. Full Review

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