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Tuesday, January 29, 2019

The Challenger Disaster 2019 * Star

The Challenger Disaster Director: Nathan VonMinden
Year: 2019
Rated NR
Rating: * Star
Cast: Glenn Morshower, Dean Cain, Eric Hanson

"Do you want the space program to continue? Yes or no?" The question is, do I want the wearied, dialogue-driven film I'm reviewing to continue? That would be a confirmed nada. Man, this thing at 98 preaching minutes, still goes on and on and on.

Released in the same month as the actual Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster (circa 1986) and feeling parodied and over-extensive to the nth degree, 2019's The Challenger Disaster seems like a fitting title. Fitting for the "disaster" part anyway. This is a drab and dry true story adaptation, with middling acting, a goofy conference call scene, alleged NASA negligence, and total fact-based injustice. Seven people died going up in that shuttle back in good old 86'. In regards to the misguided "Challenger", they truly deserved a better tribute.

Feeling like a TV movie (which it is), showing a blase time setting for the mid-80's, and containing spacey dialogue that's totally technobabble, The Challenger Disaster has its characters constantly bickering and acting a fool. Of note: It was interesting seeing C-list actor Dean Cain show up as a poodle-like lawyer in "Challenger". To be truthful, I haven't viewed this dude in anything since he cameo-d in a 2009 episode of Entourage. Oh yeah, there were those few stints as the dopey-eyed Rick in Beverly Hills, 90210 (via 1992). All I gotta say is ugh.

Image result for the challenger disaster 2019 movie scenesDirected by a guy known for shorts (Nathan VonMinden), containing rash, flashback editing, garnering some cheesy italics, and showing thespian clowns as a suitable solution for a cast, "Challenger" chronicles steadfast engineer Adam (played by Eric Hanson). Adam wants to stop the STS-51-L from achieving flight because of a vast temperature change in Cape Canaveral, Florida (30 degrees or colder). He fails and ends up suing the NASA company he works for.

All in all, The Challenger Disaster is a closed in, behind the scenes squabble that took place the day before the infamous shuttle explosion on Jan. 28, 1986 (33 years later and this is what Hollywood has come up with? Come on!). With its notion of human lives mattering less than salaried jobs and its labored, brought-by-committee ending, "Challenger" is sadly the equivalent to the badly reviewed Parkland flick concerning the JFK assassination (at 50% on Rotten Tomatoes, that can't be good for 2013's Parkland). My rating: 1 star.

Written by Jesse Burleson

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