STOCKTON, Calif. — If ever there was a movie with the power to inspire, the story of the Stockton farmworker turned astronaut would be the one to do it.
"A Million Miles Away" follows the story of Jose Hernandez as he tries to go from the fields to the stars. The cast is led by Michael Pena, who portrays the Stockton native in his adult years as he struggles and strives to achieve his dream.
Notably, Hernandez applied 11 times to the space program only to be rejected by NASA. But his persistence ultimately paid off on his 12th attempt.
That tenacity and inspirational core is why many critics and reviewers are praising the film.
"A Million Miles Away" is sitting at 89% on Rotten Tomatoes with 38 critic reviews, however, the audience score has the film sitting even higher at 96% with more than 100 ratings.
"Thanks in part to a pair of appealing lead performances, A Million Miles Away is one inspirational biopic that mostly avoids heavy-handed gimmicks," Rotten Tomatoes wrote in their Critics Consensus.
Over on the Internet Movie Database (IMDB), the praise is also high. IMDB has the movie at 7.5 stars out of 10 with more than 2,000 reviews.
Amazon Prime lists the movie at 4.9 stars out of 5 with 144 ratings. It's also listed as their #1 movie in the United States.
The movie is available to stream on Amazon Prime. Notably, the movie about the migrant farmworker who became an astronaut was released on the same day as the start of Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15.
There's a small spoiler after this point, so if you'd like to keep the surprise a surprise, don't read on.
Astute viewers might recognize a familiar face next to Michael Pena as he prepares for his journey into space. One of the technicians helping him is the real-life Jose Hernandez. He makes a cameo toward the end of the movie.