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The Space Race

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This chronicle of U.S.-Soviet astronautical rivalry — auspiciously coinciding with the Apollo 13 video launch — isn’t much fun, but it’s well crafted. Starting with Sputnik and finishing with post-Cold War cooperation, The Space Race recounts achievements and disasters in an engaging slide-and-video show. Though the voice-of-God narration grows tiresome, the story is full of neat details: the errant Soviet moon probe that went into solar orbit, the Apollo astronaut who attempted ESP in space. As the narrative unfolds you can explore tangents, but these info nuggets interrupt the flow; it’s better to sample them separate from the feature presentation. B+