Sunshine [DVD] 
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It's save the earth time again, as a group of unfeasibly hot astronauts dare to go... Danny Boyle directs his take on the earth-under-threat scenario in an often gloomy and violent fashion. This time round, it's fifty years from now, and the Sun is on its way out, threatening mass destruction here on earth. Eight sexy astronauts (including Cillian Murphy, Rose Byrne, Michelle Yeoh and Chris Evans) have been dispatched to the heart of the solar system in a ship called, ominously, the Icarus II - to kickstart the sputtering star. The notion of darkness and the fear it instills is utilized as a scaremongering theme but is alternated with jarring scenes of pure white light when the ship nears its objective. With a few jolts of unexpected terror and a moody soundtrack by Underworld, Boyle tries very hard to make you afraid of the dark again.
You can never accuse director Danny Boyle of lacking ambition. Sunshine sees one of Britains most successful directors switching genre once more, as he tackles this gripping science fiction flick about a quest to re-ignite the dying sun. And he nails it, too, adding another plus to a CV thats already covered a kids' film (Millions), a big Hollywood blockbuster (The Beach), horror (28 Days Later), and a pair of British classics (Trainspotting and Shallow Grave).
Bursting out of the gate at a terrific pace, Sunshine then doesnt take its foot off the accelerator for much of its near-two hour running time. Set around the crew of the Icarus II who find themselves on a life-saving mission, things soon start going awry, and while youll find no plot spoilers here, Boyle proves a dab hand at ratcheting up tension on the way to the big finale.
If anything, its the finale to Sunshine that does let the side down, not quite living up to the standard of what preceded it. But such is the strength of the ride to that point that its hard to complain. Especially when the cast, led by the always-magnetic Cillian Murphy, put in believable performances and get heavily into the spirit of the film.
Topped off with cracking effects that belie its modest budget, Sunshine is a real treat, not just for sci-fi fans, but for anyone who likes a strong, tense, thrilling night in front of a movie. --Jon Foster
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Top Customer Reviews
1. It's boring. That's true, if you're the kind of person who can't sit through any film that doesn't have gunfire and explosions through 90% of the movie.
2. It's not a good Sci-Fi movie like Armageddon. Well, the fact that these people think Armageddon is great tells us something about their taste.
3. It's scientifically inaccurate. I find it hilarious that these critics think they know more about physics than Dr Cox, the scientific advisor who provides a commentary on the DVD. Of course there is artistic licence, but there's nothing wrong with that.
4. The end doesn't make sense. No, the end is confusing - there's a big difference.
5. The characters are paper thin. Again, not true. There is so much depth to the characters, but you need to actually think about it. Like any good script, this shows us the depth to the characters, rather than telling us. Look especially at Chris Evans' character.
This is an amazing film, and is easily the best of 2007 (so far). There are plenty of films for the people who didn't like this, but there are only a few movies with the perfect mix of style and substance that Sunshine achieves.
The set is beautiful- and actually constructed for a change. Danny Boyle really pulls off the clostrophobia of alien and the romance and sterility of 2001 all in one. and i for one loved all the exterior shots! I really don't think boyle went overboard on the CGI. having an on-board physist really made for an interesting (and different) ship.
The performances are wonderful without exception. But Hiroyuki Sanada and Cillian Murphy really shine. Everything is subtle and underplayed- just the way a big sci-fi should be.
The underworld score is just fantastic. Giving a feel of unease and hyperactivity all the way through. The direction is mindblowing (especially the end sequence)... I just loved this film.
and remember- when you buy this fantastic film- you're supporting the british film industry!
I saw this movie twice at the cinema. Now I have the DVD, the more I watch this film the more impressed I am: camerawork, editing - both sound AND picture - music, effects are all worthy of praise. The acting too is good, although some of the diction of the actors leave a little to be desired. But overall, this is a triumph of British cinema: a visual masterpiece.
There are a few problems with the otherwise-excellent plot. For example, how come no one is Capa's deputy in case he becomes indisposed? How come no one protests when Mace volunteers Capa to go outside with the captain to assess the damage to the shield? And why does Capa go alone to the observation room to see who is the fifth unknown crew member, and why would the computer allow the room to be drenched with full sunlight when it was occupied?
One of the few things I would change is that I would have used John Murphy's excellent music over the closing credits, thus leaving the audience to leave the cinema on a high.
My DVD comes with a chirpy commentary by Danny Boyle (pre-Slumdog) in which he comments on the tricks employed in the movie, the colour palette, camerawork and other technical issues. He acknowledges that serious science fiction requires a slow pace, and identifies the three elements that all serious sci-fi films possess: a ship, a crew, and a signal that changes everything.
As influences, he name-checks Scott's `Alien', Kubrick's `2001', and Tarkovsky's `Solaris' as the main influences; but also `Apocalypse Now!Read more ›
Sci-fi is just a way of making "Space-Opera" sound better.
Sunshine surprised me. I was expecting a good old cheesy job like Event Horizon - which I note it has already been compared to. However, in my opinion Sunshine has a LOT more substance, and is one of the most hardcore science fiction films I have seen in a long time.
The average popcorn-munching cinema goer will be bored and disappointed. This film requires concentration and a high level of emotional involvement for it to be enjoyed.
Reading the other reviews - the person who compared it to 2001: A Space Odyssey was about right. If you're into sci-fi, this film isn't for you. Science fiction fans only!
I thank you.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I am not interested in the DVD’s content, only in whether it contains English subtitles for the deaf. Read morePublished 18 days ago by Deaf Ears
Excellent film, but in particular the extra with Brian Cox commentary is superbPublished 21 days ago by Stealthmike
Underrated film, SCI FI fans wont be disappointed. They should make a second one?Published 1 month ago by Mo
An interesting idea but I found the film boring. For a wet afternoon if you are desperate for something to do.Published 1 month ago by Christine
Kickstarting a dying sun with a honking great atom bomb? That’s the sort of plot that made great old-style Sci-Fi great.
And this is great. Read more
An under-rated classic. You'll enjoy this if you like films like interstellar, Moon etc.Published 2 months ago by Mr. J. Hunt