Countdown

1968

Countdown

Critics Consensus

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80%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 5

28%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 251
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Movie Info

Improvisational director Robert Altman hadn't yet found his cinematic "voice" when he helmed the conformist, stick-to-the-script Countdown. James Caan is top-billed as a scientist who is chosen over astronaut Robert Duvall for the upcoming NASA moon shot. In their haste to beat the Russians to the moon, the NASA folks have tried to sidestep several safety measures, but doctor Charles Aidman sees to it that every possible precaution is taken. When Caan makes it to the lunar surface, he stumbles upon gruesome evidence that the Russians had sent up a secret expedition themselves--and had fatally ignored all those extra security precautions which he's been subject to. Ted Knight, who received some of his best pre-Mary Tyler Moore roles in Altman's TV work, co-stars in Countdown. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi

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News & Interviews for Countdown

Critic Reviews for Countdown

All Critics (5) | Top Critics (1) | Fresh (4) | Rotten (1)

Audience Reviews for Countdown

  • Oct 07, 2010
    it may seem kinda silly now but the space race was a huge deal in the '60's when it seemed imperative that the u.s. reach the moon before the russians. this is a good tense character-driven drama of two buddies competing to be the single astronaut who will make the trip. james caan and robert duvall were both near the beginning of their long careers; this was the first of many onscreen pairings and they remain good friends. the film is also notable as being robert altman's first feature as a director-for-hire after much work in tv and documentary films. the producers weren't exactly pleased with his more radical ideas and he either quit or was fired before the final cut. it's a bit corny at times, special effects are weak and the ending is predictable but this was a solid debut. and two years later he made MASH and received his first oscar nomination so it's all good
    Stella D Super Reviewer
  • Aug 02, 2009
    Please shove a 70 CC syringe of Atropine into my heart, I'm dying of boredom over here!
    Pamela D Super Reviewer

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