About October Sky
West Virginia, 1957. In the tiny mining community of Coalwood, high school student Homer Hickam Jr (Jake Gyllenhaal) is inspired by the Soviet Sputnik satellite, and dreams of building a rocket of his own. He is hampered by his father's (Chris Cooper) resistance, but with the help of his teacher, Frieda Riley (Laura Dern), he aims to fulfil his stellar vision.
As directed by Joe Johnston (The Rocketeer), the spirit of adventure and invention is infectiously conveyed through Gyllenhaal and his well-cast fellow rocketeers, whose many failures gradually lead to triumph on their makeshift launching pad. Capturing time and place with impeccable detail and superbly developed characters (including Laura Dern as an inspiring schoolteacher), October Sky is a family film for all ages, encouraging the highest potential of the human spirit while giving viewers a clear view of a bygone era when "the final frontier" beckoned to the explorer in everyone.