Astronomy Club Presents ‘October Sky’

20th October, 2016

The Astronomy Club has kept itself quite occupied this semester. On Wednesday, the 26th of October, 2016, the chairperson of the Astronomy Club, Ved Dubhashi conducted a movie screening from 5:45 to 7:30 at the AC-Seminar Hall. October Sky, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Chris Cooper amongst other Hollywood A-listers was a brilliant choice of film for the following reasons:

a) The film spurs the intellectual aficionado in you. A deeply stirring line goes, “It is better to have your head in the clouds and know where you are, than to breathe the clearer atmosphere below them and think you are in paradise.” To assert this in a sea of cosmic enthusiasts expeditiously enforces that irrespective of your current discipline, you must never give up on your passions.

b) The poignancy with which Joe Johnston, the director, has portrayed the father-son relationship is truly remarkable and resonates the belief that eventually, those who consciously keep our best interests at helm will rise to the occasion when required.

October Sky is based on the true story of Homer Hadley Hickam Jr, an American author, Vietnam War veteran and former NASA engineer. His autobiographical novel October Sky: A Memoir was a No. 1 New York Times Bestseller and was the basis for the 1999 film October Sky.


The chronicle follows a coal miner’s son who was inspired by the first Sputnik launch to take up rocketry against his father’s wishes. It is a profoundly insightful film that the youth can connect with on a personal level. The triumph of the underdog is one of literature’s most enduring themes, and October Sky does not disappoint. The script, production design, and acting are far beyond exemplary.

The year is 1957. As Sputnik parts the October Sky over a humble West Virginia coal mining town, one idealistic teen hatches visions of sending his own rocket into space. This is a heartfelt story of how young Homer Hickam and his three classmates beat the odds and inspired a myopic community to believe that dreams are truly worth chasing.


With emphasized dew-eyed aspirations, this film does hit home quite hard, since the general culture of favouring security over aspiration can barely be regarded as conducive.

On a plethora of occasions, Homer is viciously attacked by his father, who continually strips him of his dignity and publicly humiliates him. Ultimately, however, the father comes through for his son. Elsewhere, a bold step towards reconciliation overcomes Homer – a thriving example for adolescents who experience helpless ness when it comes to improving intergenerational conflict in their own homes.


The evening was an extravagant blend of some quality cinema and a fine message to go along with it-

“Never hesitate to trade your cows for a handful of magic beans.”

Ananya Roy for MTTN

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