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Dan the Man's Movie Reviews

All my aimless thoughts, ideas, and ramblings, all packed into one site!

Sunshine (2007)


When Sheryl Crow sang, “I wanna soak up the sun”, these people took that to the heart.

With permanent darkness looming, scientists devise a plan to reignite the sun before the lights go out forever. To do so, a crew of astronauts is sent hurtling through space on an intense mission to determine the fate of the planet.

Director Danny Boyle is a dude that has been doing great things for the past decade. Ever since he flew on the radar with Trainspotting, people have been watching this guy for just what crazy story he’ll bring out next. This is one of them.

Boyle does a great job with this film because he creates this ultra-freaky sense of claustrophobia as the crew members get closer and closer to the sun, and farther and farther away from the actual planet. This is how Boyle creates suspense as he shows more close-up shots, confined structures, and basically telling us what’s going to happen next but still leaving that little thought and idea that something, just something may go wrong.

Another great thing that Boyle does here is show us perfect actually almost seamless dazzling effects that look like an actual spacecraft if it were to travel to the sun. I liked how Boyle used all these different types of vibrant colors to contract the over-bearing darkness in space. The scenes of where we actually see the sun hitting these people’s eyes or just seeing the sun in general are actually very well-detailed and if Boyle did one thing right here, it was to show us just about pitch-perfect visuals that never seemed to disappoint and brought me more and more into this world.

My main problem with this film is that none of this really seems original which is what anyone could see from a mile away. I almost got the sense of claustrophobia that I had with Alien, or the talking space-ship from 2001, or hell even the little plot twists that happen here reminded me so much of Solaris and plenty other sci-fi flicks. This isn’t saying that this one doesn’t stand well on it’s own two feet because it does well, but the constant reminders of countless other sci-fi films started to annoy me.

I like how Boyle chose this international cast and actually all had them live together so he could get this very legit feel between all of the, and to say the least it worked. Cillian Murphy is the real showcase of talent here as Capa; Rose Byrne is gorgeous but also very good as Cassie; Michelle Yeoh creates a very good character which is something I wasn’t expecting as Corazon; and Cliff Curtis does a good job as the reasonable nice guy, Searle.

The best out of the cast though is a guy I actually talked about not too long ago in my Captain America review. Chris Evans is stunning here and attributes to a lot of the scenes he has because he has that legitimate feel to him and it almost seems when everybody’s getting all too freaky and crazy with what’s about to happen. He’s the one who always seems to breath some fresh air of smarts into their sci-fi heads and even though the rest of the cast is good he is still the one that seems to do it for me the most.

My final problem with this film is that the tone starts to switch very dramatically by the last hour. The first hour is this building of suspense, sci-fi, and unknowings, but then the last half comes up and then we get this strange, trapped, almost slasher flick kind of film. This kind of disappointed me because it was never explained why the last half actually happened the way it did and the way everything happens just seems so run-of-the-mill even though I thought the ending had a good touch.

Consensus: This isn’t a totally original film, and the final act may disappoint, but Sunshine benefits from Boyle’s inspired direction that creates suspense, beautiful visual effects, and a cast that actually do well with their roles and seem like actual people rather than just a bunch of action cliches.

7/10=Rental!!

Happy Last Day Of Summer of Everyone! It’s been a great one!

13 responses to “Sunshine (2007)

  1. Steven Flores August 31, 2011 at 5:23 am

    I agree that it gets a little messy in the third act as with a lot of Boyle’s films from The Beach to this one. Still, it was entertaining as well as an idea of what sci-fi films should be.

    And for the record, I hate that fucking Sheryl Crow song. In fact, Sheryl Crow fucking sucks. She’s nothing more than a middle-of-the-road singer-songwriter who overstayed her welcome with boring songs and a mediocre voice. Anyone wants to challenge me on this? BRING IT ON!!!!

  2. Mark Hobin August 31, 2011 at 6:50 am

    I’ve always loved this film. While it’s not wholly original, true, it has a style I find hypnotic. Danny Boyle is a true auteur, tackling genre after genre with confidence. Comedy, Drama, Horror Science Fiction – is there any category he can’t do?

  3. fogsmoviereviews August 31, 2011 at 10:51 am

    Haven’t seen this one yet. I want to though, people always say good things.

    Thnaks for the 411 Dan.

  4. SJHoneywell August 31, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    Count me in as someone disappointed with the third act. There was no reason to turn this into a pseudo psychological thriller at the end–the plot we started with was enough.

    It’s disappointing, too, because the first half or so of this film is really beautiful.

    • CMrok93 September 1, 2011 at 1:11 am

      It really is but then it dives into a just plain weird psychological-thriller idea and I don’t know why because it did work out so well at first. Thanks SJ!

  5. Vik V. September 1, 2011 at 11:17 am

    I thought this film was original in the sense that there wasn’t a real enemy– until the third act. The first three quarters of the film were terrific, I thought, but then, as if Boyle didn’t know how to end it, he threw in this monster-like man. Great review!

  6. mhofmeyer September 5, 2011 at 1:30 pm

    This was the first film I watched on Blu-Ray. I love it. It is Boyle’s 2001.

  7. Grande Falcone September 5, 2011 at 6:41 pm

    I really enjoyed Sunshine! Thought it was a fairly refreshing offering from the sci-fi genre.

  8. Caroline Crow February 3, 2013 at 7:16 pm

    I missed this- going to get a copy now! You have got to review Puncture. I am dying to hear your take!

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