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8. 'Le Voyage Dans La Lune'
Director: Georges Melies
Why: "A Trip to the Moon," as we Yanks call it, probably isn't the most accurate depiction of space travel ever put on celluloid, but it still works as a lovely counterpoint to more realistic gallery entries like "The Right Stuff" and "Apollo 13." Like those modern films, "A Trip to the Moon" asks very fundamental questions about human nature: Why do we look to the stars? Why do we want to travel to space? What do we hope or expect to find when we get there? And, like "2001" or the "Star Wars" films, Georges Melies' masterpiece took massive leaps in cinematic craft and special effects and, like those classics, "Le voyage dans la lune" inspired audiences and future storytellers to believe that more was possible, both in terms of journeys beyond our planet, but also the growth of cinematic craft. Whimsical and inspired and still fairly astounding for its use of the medium, the vitality of "Le voyage dans la lune" was only reasserted by Martin Scorsese's "Hugo." This is why we go to the movies.