Five years after a tragic space disaster, South Korea is making a second attempt to land on the moon. But during this voyage, solar flares disrupt most of the on-board systems. Two of the crew are killed, leaving the least experienced one, Hwang Seon-woo (Do Kyung-soo), on his own. Meanwhile, mission control coerces former flight director Kim Jae-guk (Sol Kyung-gu) out of seclusion to talk Hwang through restoring the systems to survive. Still reeling from the previous tragedy, for which he feels partially responsible, Kim has a personal stake in bringing Hwang back home alive.
However, Hwang decides to complete the moon mission himself, which results in further peril when a meteor storm cripples his lander. Realizing they are now unable to rescue Hwang with their own resources, Kim implores his estranged ex-wife, Moon Young (Kim Hee-ae), who works at NASA, for assistance. But despite her efforts, the other NASA bigwigs sternly refuse…at least until one of Hwang’s radio transmissions is leaked and goes viral on social media.
|Hwang forgets where he parked.
While Kim is a well-realized main character - played with appropriate pathos by Kyung-gu - some others are either needlessly stupid (including Hwang) or over-the-top caricatures, such as the two perpetually screaming Korean officials. Worst of all is NASA's deputy director, who threatens and sneers like a Bond villain (hamfistedly establishing NASA as the bad guys).
Still, The Moon is a lot of fun. We don’t buy everything we see and hear, but the film is well-directed, looks great and features solid performances (save for Paul de Havilland’s hilariously distracting one-note turn as the aforementioned NASA man). Alternately gripping and outlandish, at least it’s never boring.
FEATURETTES - Behind the Scenes; Character Bios.