Sunshine 1999

Amazon Instant Video

(56) IMDb 7.5/10

This beautifully filmed epic tale follows a Hungarian Jewish family through five generations spanning more than 100 years from the mid 1800s to the mid 1900s. Explored is how the history, politics, war, social habits and economic state of the country influences and changes them.

Starring:
Ralph Fiennes,Jennifer Ehle
Runtime:
2 hours, 52 minutes

Available to watch on supported devices.

Sunshine

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Product Details

Genres Military & War, Drama, Romance, Historical
Director István Szabó
Starring Ralph Fiennes, Jennifer Ehle
Supporting actors Rachel Weisz, William Hurt, Deborah Unger, Molly Parker, Rosemary Harris, John Neville, David De Keyser, Mark Strong, Miriam Margolyes, James Frain
Studio Momentum Pictures
BBFC rating Suitable for 15 years and over
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

38 of 38 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 19 Jan. 2001
Format: VHS Tape
Being Hungarian and Jewish I was reluctant to see the film in the cinema. But I should not have worried. Although it shows in detail the depressive and violent side of Hungarian history in the 19th & 20th century, it is a masterpiece of cinematography. I am far from being a prude, the only critisism I have of the film is that there are too many sex scenes, and most of them do not add to the storyline. The photography and the sets are handled with great sensitivity and the colours are gentle and authentic...
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122 of 124 people found the following review helpful By Stella (Ex Libris) on 8 May 2006
Format: DVD
This movie is simply brilliant!

It tells the story of a Hungarian Jewish family through 3 generations. We get to see the history of the 20th century, the 2nd world war, how it aaffected Hungary through a family's life. And though everything changes around the Sonnenschein (later Sors) family: regimes, friends, people they can trust, etc... there is still a constancy: the bloodline, the relations, the family bond, the love.

It is such a moving an overwhelming movie, simply brilliant.

The cast is excellent! From Jennifer Ehle to Rachel Weisz, everybody is perfect! And for Ralph Fiennes who plays the 3 main characters (the grandfather, the father and the son), I can't find the words. He plays them so masterfully, that despite the physical ressemblance, you can see that they are 3 totally different persons.

Yes, of course it is dark because it deals with deportation, Jewish camps, but it is that kind of film that after seeing it, you will be thinking about it for days. I have first seen it when I was 14, and ever since it has been one of my favorite movies, not only because the acting is excellent, or the photography breathtaking, but because it gives a whole round story with such emotional depth and moral lessons that the catharsis is guaranteed.

A wonderful movie, you absolutely have to check out if you haven't seen it yet!
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36 of 37 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 10 Jan. 2006
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
this film is a rather long but very fine portrayal of a hungarian jewish family whose fate is constantly altered over the generations by the political swings in their country. wether it's the communists or the facists in power, someone in the family is supporting the wrong team. fiennes is superb in this film and it's a good thing as really is at the heart of this story as he plays several members of this family whose attempts to assimilate affect their future generation more than they consider. don't be put off, this is not a film of doom and gloom, it's rather subtle and raises interressting questions about nationalism and loyalty, tradition and another dissfuntional family
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 2 Jan. 2001
Format: VHS Tape
This amazing story tells the life of a Hungarian Jewish family's 4 generations through the region's storms of the twentieth century's history. Excellent screenplay, excellent filming, excellent actors and excellent story which picks out the most caracteristic moments of each period.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 16 Feb. 2001
Format: VHS Tape
I've seen Ralph is some pretty damm good films ( and some pretty terrible ones i.e Wuthering Heights), but this one is him at his best. Fans of his work or just his looks should get this one.
However, I am belittling this movie by just talking about Ralph Fiennes. It is stunning to look at; transporting you to a world of both beauty and cruelty. The director captures the sense of turmoil within a nation ( the Austro-hunguarian empire ) and the conflict that the political instability presents to a wealthly Jewish family. The film's almost encyclopeadic approach to the three regimes within the time frame echoes a simple, yet valuable message to the three generations of that family ( who are all played by Fiennes ) and that it is to be true to ones self, even in times of adversty. Sunshine to conclude is a breathing taking and breathe stopping film that's relevant today as it was then.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By E. A. Redfearn TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 8 Oct. 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The story set over a period of more than seventy years, it tells of successive generations of a Jewish family living in the Austrian-Hungarian empire, their families, their loves, their trial and tribulations. Within the backdrop of the First World War, the collapse of an empire, the struggles to survive during economic downturns, and the Nazi occupations during World War Two with the Holocaust at its height. The story ends with the eventual collapse of the Hungarian Uprising during the mid 1950s against Russian occupation.

It is a film made on an epic scale with a very fine cast, Ralph Fiennes who portrays the son, grandson, and great grandson, Jennifer Ehle as the woman he loves, and Rosemary Harris who portrays her in old age. Also present are James Frain, Rachel Weisz, William Hurt and Miriam Margoyles, with John Neville and Deborah Kara Unger in supporting roles.

I found it a very absorbing film to watch, as the characters struggle along with their lives, meeting the challenges as they arise.

The film has a very good soundtrack, 5:1 which works well on a Home Cinema system; although the picture detail was lacking in some scenes, with rather grainy and dark scenes. However, this did not spoil my enjoyment, it seemed to add to the atmosphere somewhat.

A worthy view for those who enjoy those type of films which convey human interest stories on an epic scale.
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