Do astronauts watch movies in the ISS?

They do.  Sometimes studios will make a digital copy available to NASA to upload to the ISS.  The crew sometimes watch films while they exercise on the treadmill.  For example, this past summer, Paramount made Star Trek: Into Darkness available.  It was uploaded to the crew, and then astronaut Chris Cassidy participated in a Google+ hangout where they talked a little bit about the movie and Chris answered questions about living on the ISS.

Sandra Bullock (one of the stars of Gravity) spoke to astronaut Cady Coleman, while Coleman was onboard the ISS, to learn what it was like to live and work in space.  Coleman was asked about that conversation and the film:

"So I have only seen one trailer and it is the one where they're on a spacewalk and devastating things happen," Coleman said.  "I actually first saw that trailer when I was helping to escort one of the families of our spacewalkers earlier this year, and I just thought, 'Oh my goodness! I just hope his family is not watching this trailer before he goes out on a spacewalk.'  It (the film) sensationalizes a lot of things we do actually very carefully."

Coleman said that with her own family she acknowledges the real risks of spaceflight but tries to avoid dwelling on the "what if all four of these things were to happen at the same time" questions.

"For something that is dangerous and that we do take very seriously, to see your worst fears realized in 30 seconds is scary," Coleman admitted.

The producers of Gravity apparently did not seek any connection to NASA during production of the film, so I doubt they'll seek it during the release.  And it would probably be perceived as poor taste for NASA to assist in marketing a depiction of a Space Shuttle crew being killed. So the film likely won't be available to the crew until it is released on DVD/digital.

I think Cady's quote represents the most common crew view - watching a film where your home gets destroyed, while you are in that home, probably isn't high on their list of fun things to do. 

Even if they did see it, they might not want to talk about it because of the old adage "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything."  People in any profession often have difficulty watching films about their profession because movies don't make a lot of effort to be accurate.  I haven't seen Gravity yet (I will), but watching the trailers is not a pleasant experience because:

1) It depicts something terrible happening to the people and vehicle I work with.
2) It doesn't look accurate.  With every trailer I find myself saying out loud "that's not how that works!"

In the Google+ hangout there is a moment where the Star Trek people ask Chris about the realism of the space scenes in their movie.  Chris deftly deflects a direct answer.  Astronauts would likely have to do the same thing with Gravity.


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