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Sunshine
DVD disk
01.08.2008 By: Sturdy
Sunshine order
Director:
Danny Boyle

Actors:
Cilian Murphy
Michelle Yeoh
Chris Evans

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Fifty years in the future, the earth’s sun is dying out. A team of 8 scientists are sent to space to launch a bomb into the sun to re-ignite it and heat the earth. Along the way, they encounter more than they bargained for and must fight to accomplish their mission.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
SUNSHINE was almost there. It was so close to being a great science fiction movie, but it pulled back too many punches and in the end, it felt like the filmmakers got scared and resorted to cheap scare tactics to finish the movie. I wanted to love this film, but I was so disappointed with the zombie-like ending that I just can’t get over it.

The most frustrating thing about the film is that it was so intense for about 90 minutes. Danny Boyle is a master at creating intensity in simple situations. Natural problems were popping up throughout the film and that simplicity was the strongest point of the film. We understood the oxygen problem and the supplies issue. Those are real problems that audiences can relate to and get involved with.

What we don’t want is another zombie flick. That is the trap this fell into during the last fourth of the film. We were so involved with the characters and their plight and then Boyle threw us a cheap curveball to completely sell out the movie. We didn’t need it. He could’ve kept the same intensity by having the crew go through more natural failures. I think that would have made for a more genuine film. The best part of the film were the human choices that the captain and the pilot had to make. It was tough watching them make those decisions for the good of the mission. Unfortunately, the human factor was lost towards the end.

As bummed as I was with the lame ending, there was still 3/4ths of a film that was pretty darned good. It wasn’t a typical sci-fi film. It had heart and real characters that were interesting. I think there was still enough positive in this film to please most audiences, but the last act leaves a lot to be desired. The entire cast turns in great performances and Danny Boyle once again proves he’s a great director.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary with Danny Boyle: Danny Boyle is a passionate filmmaker that loves his work. Therefore, he’s a great listen and this track is no different. He covers just about everything you wanted to know about making the film. He’s not an overly funny person, so don’t expect any funny antidotes about the making of the film. He keeps it more to filmmaking decisions and making-of information.

Commentary with Dr. Brian Cox: Dr. Cox is the physicist that Cilian Murphy’s character was inspired from. He was also the technical advisor to the cast and crew and therefore he gets his own commentary track. He’s actually an interesting person but you can tell he’s nervous doing the track. Therefore, you may find it difficult to listen to since his voice is a little jumpy.

Deleted Scenes (18:58): Most of these added to the human element in the film and I think they could have been left in and their inclusion wouldn’t have changed the movie. Watching them by themselves, they were kind of boring.

Web Diaries (4:53): Web diaries and “webisodes” are meant to generate buzz for a film before it’s released. Therefore, watching them after the fact is kind of pointless. It’s nice they were included, but they were pretty boring.

“Dad’s Dead” (7:48): This is a short film that Boyle liked and so he included it on the DVD. It’s actually really good and worth watching. I liked the style and the tone of the film. It was very interesting and a little creepy.

“Mole Hills” (7:05): This is another short film, but this one wasn’t nearly as interesting. In fact, it’s films like these that give short films a bad name. Not all short films are excruciatingly boring like this one.

There are also some Previews
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
This film didn't find much of an audience at theaters and I expect it to do moderately well on DVD. I might be alone with my frustrations with the ending, so you’ll have to decide for yourself. I think most people will still find it worth the time.
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