One reason for my excitement must have been these photographs in Life. My grandmother was a subscriber to Life, and since she lived only a couple of blocks away, I visited her several times a week. One thing I always did was read the latest issue of the magazine, and the photos from Destination Moon got me all worked up. I could hardly wait for the movie to appear. When It finally did show up, I was there, and I went back to see it again before it left town.
Robert A. Heinlein contributed to the script, though I didn't know it at the time and didn't know who he was until a few years later, when I read Rocketship Galileo, a novel that has some similarities to the movie.
Even 60 years later, I have vivid memories of the movie itself and of specific scenes. An audience today would probably think it was corny (and it was), but I'd probably still love it. I guess I should order the DVD.