First things first. The premise of the movie is not really about making a new sun. Maybe. The film manages to shroud that in mystery, and every reference to the purpose of going to the sun is somewhat vague and open to interpretation.
Okay, that’s not the first thing I should have said. I should have started out by saying that this movie is terrific. It’s the most solid and satisfying piece of cinema I’ve seen this year, although the competition is stiff from a handful of other titles.
Naturally, since it’s a completely good piece of sci-fi, it is currently enjoying limited release in theaters, and no one is watching it. There were two people besides my group in the last showing of Sunshine that I saw. FUCK you guys who weren’t in the theater to watch it, lined up for Bratz or something instead.
The premise is that eight astronauts have been shipped into the sun (Which is “dying”, but not because it’s burning out… yes… ambiguous, sorry. In earlier versions of the script the issue was dealt with more firmly), to either fix a problem with it or restart it or, yes, maybe even start a new star. That is the only slight issue this movie has, the vagaries of their mission. Frankly, almost all of the solarnauts don’t even understand what, exactly, is going to happen when they drop their payload off into the nearest star.
But Earth is slowly freezing as the Sun dies, so they’ve pretty much got to do something. They’ve got a massive payload and a nice space station-type vehicle to push it.
The actors form an excellent ensemble cast. Michelle Yeoh (Playing the unusually kickassless character of a botanist), Cillian Murphy (Also reserved), Chris Evans (Ditch your Fucktarded Four career, man! He seriously outshines, haha, everything else in those movies anyway), you’ve probably heard of them. They do brilliantly, and have most of the biggest roles. But every one of the other five is also great. The sappy pilot, the nervous communications officer, the navigation genius, the likable but odd psychiatrist, and the sensibly stoic captain.
Performances worth watching. Visual effects and cinematography worth re-watching. A diminutive but effectively poignant soundtrack. A train wreck of events that all make sense. Science that, honestly, puts movies that can’t even properly make sense of “the internet” (Those being every movie involving the internet in some way, EVER) to shame. It’s vague science, because the effects that seem the most important are the least-explained. But I don’t know if I’d rather spend useless minutes of the movie learning about how what I’m seeing is actually possible (Especially since even so, the scientific accuracy of the movie would be disputed. So, why bother?). It seems like the director made the right choice. And the psychology of deep space travel is, from what I understand, well-represented. Especially for people who are expected to fly right up to the face of the sun.
I’m not sure what else to say. The movie was really, really, really solid and entertaining. And, dare I say, even emotionally moving. I cared about the characters, I wanted them to succeed, and I couldn’t see how to avoid the events they couldn’t avoid. The action is gripping, the drama intense. See it. Or else I’ll be totally pissed.
This kind of filmmaking desperately needs to be rewarded.