Wednesday, August 22, 2007


Danny Boyle | 2007 | 108 min | UK

The astronauts aboard space shuttle Icarus 2 have been sent to launch a bomb into the sun, which needs to be re-ignited or else Earth is donezo. Icarus 2, as you probably gathered, are the second Icarus shuttle to be sent on this mission. Icarus 1 went missing without a trace, 7 years prior. As luck would have it, Icarus 2 stumbles across Icarus 1's distress signal as they move closer towards the sun. Half of Icarus 2's crew wants to go see if any of Icarus 1's crew is still alive, and the other half deems their mission far too important to risk diverting from their course. An argument is made that if Icarus 1's ship is salvageable, then they would have a second bomb to send into the sun, in case the first didn't hit its mark. Tensions are high, and they just keep getting higher and higher for the rest of the film.

Danny Boyle continues his streak of making mostly great films in a different genre each time out. With Sunshine, he tackles two genres at once. What starts off as a world-at-stake thriller, ends as really effective space horror. Cillian Murphy (Boyle's 28 Days Later, and Batman Begins) and Chris Evans (The Fantastic Four's Human Torch) each deliver great performances here, and are supported by a strong supporting cast that includes Hiroyuki Sanada (The Twilight Samurai), and a slightly underutilized Michelle Yeoh (The Magnificent Trio, and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon).

Why Fox Searchlight didn't give Sunshine a 2000 screen release is beyond me. It's smart, sure; but it's not a limited release picture. It's been well reviewed by most, and I think Fox really dropped the ball on this one. Could have been a money maker to be proud of.

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