Man on a Mission | Chicago Reader

Man on a Mission

This amiable documentary profiles Richard Garriott, a wealthy computer-game designer who paid $30 million in 2008 to take part in a private outer-space mission on board Russia’s Soyuz rocket. In his effort to portray Garriott as a boyish dreamer (as opposed to, say, a self-serving elite), director Mike Woolf disregards the far more interesting subject hidden in plain sight. Garriott is a character straight out of a David Cronenberg movie, mutated by his own creation (role-playing fantasies experienced mainly in isolation, at a computer) into seeing the universe as a giant single-player game. Alas, Woolf is more interested in the operating procedures of space missions, space station experiments, and other standard National Geographic fare.

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