Race to Space (2001) - Rotten Tomatoes

Race to Space2001

Race to Space (2001)




Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Race to Space Photos

Movie Info

A chimp helps bring together a boy and his father -- as well as putting America in the lead of the space race -- in this drama, which was inspired by the true story of the Mercury-Redstone 2 mission in 1961. Dr. Wilhelm von Huber (James Woods) is a German expatriate scientist living in the United States in the early '60s who has been hired by the fledging National Aeronautics and Space Administration to help America launch its newly formed space program. Von Huber is recently widowed, and his son, Wilhelm II (Alex D. Linz) -- known as Billy to most of his friends -- is still dealing with the loss of his mother. The often cold and exacting Dr. von Huber is having trouble reaching out to his son, and Billy is having a hard time making friends at his new school in Florida. One day, while dropping by NASA's labs to visit his father, Billy discovers a secret: NASA has previously been using unmanned missiles in their tests, but before taking the giant step of sending a man into space, they're going to try an experimental mission with a chimpanzee on board to get a better idea of how people might be affected by space travel. Dr. Donni McGuinness (Annabeth Gish), NASA's head veterinarian, makes a deal with Billy: If he promises not to tell anyone about NASA's secret project, she'll give him a part-time job helping to train Mac the Chimp for his big flight. Billy soon becomes quite attached to his new friend Mac, and discovers it's harder than he imagined to send him into space without knowing if he'll come back safely. Race to Space also features William Atherton and William Devane, while Tyler the chimp appears as Mac.


James Woods
as Dr. Wilhelm von Huber
Annabeth Gish
as Donni McGuinness
Alex D. Linz
as Billy Von Huber
William Devane
as Richard Thornhill
Barry Corbin
as Earl Vestal
Mark Moses
as Alan Shepard
Wesley Mann
as Rudolph
Michael Tylo
as Guidance Technician
Scott Thompson Baker
as Telemetry Technician
Michael Jeffery Woods
as Dexterity Technician
Denae Adams
as Stephanie
Pam Baumann
as Mrs. Gallagher
Tim Goodwin
as Principal
Barry James
as Gate Guard
Jim Wise
as Air Policeman
Patrick Ecclestine
as Vet Assistant
View All

Critic Reviews for Race to Space

All Critics (7) | Top Critics (2)

It could get a whole new generation of kids looking up at the stars and wondering, 'Why not?'

March 21, 2002 | Rating: B

... packs a fair amount of crowd-rousing potential.

March 20, 2002

Boy trains chimp heading into space; peril and bullying.

April 16, 2019 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…

According to the cuddly sweet family flick Race to Space, the birth of the United States space program was important only in relation to a silly monkey and his 12-year-old pal.

October 17, 2002 | Rating: 62/100

Wow! Monkeys in orbit! Laughable non-history lesson. James Woods has the worst German accent in history

August 26, 2002 | Rating: 1/5

Sean MacNamara serves up an enjoyable family drama here with enough comedy, tears and adventure to entertain even the littlest of viewers

June 5, 2002

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