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Here’s Why Sunshine Is One of the Most Underrated Sci-Fi Movies of the Century

After 28 days later haunted audience in 2003, director Danny Boylea at the helm of a sci-fi thriller called Sunshine† Boyle previously directed the 1996 hit Train spotting and went on to produce other prominent films such as: Steve Jobs† in a IGN In an interview with Patrick Kolan, Boyle admits that he “always wanted to make a space movie; and no film has actually been made about the sun yet. And yet it is the most important.”

Sunshine takes place in the year 2057, when the sun burns up and the earth freezes over. An astronaut team mans a bomb that supposedly reheats the sun. As they fall further into space, they encounter a stress call from a ship that disappeared years earlier. The team decides to look after the ship and from this point on, the mission becomes more challenging and the story more abstract.


Although it is a unique idea, Sunshine was not celebrated as it could have been. Mick Lasalle from SFGate says the film has “no charm or interest” and that “action is shown in flashes, but what’s going on remains obscure”, In contrast, Wesley Morris of The Boston Globe notes that if the film “doesn’t float your boat like a work of science fiction, action, philosophy, heliocentrism, or stunning visual spectacle, it certainly succeeds as a parable of cinematic ambition.”

While for some Sunshine was perhaps too ambitious and featured some failed genre mixing, Danny Boyle and screenwriter Alex Garland present a thought-provoking work that confronts the mother of humanity, the sun. Sunshine faces the insignificance and arrogance of humanity against something as mysterious and powerful as a star.

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Boyle worked to create this sense of togetherness and smallness among the cast by having them do various exercises. In his interview with IGN, Boyle explains that at one point they went to a nuclear submarine that mimics “claustrophobic living conditions.” Many of these efforts put into the film went unnoticed, but resulted in the film’s most successful parts. here’s why Sunshine is one of the most underrated sci-fi movies of the century yet.

Sunshine’s Underlying Spiritual Message

The marine psychologist Searle reserves moments to observe the sun, because the view calms him. Mentally, he seems to be more in tune with the situation, realizing that he and his team really are “just stardust”. He says at one point that he is distinct from the darkness, but he is “[enveloped] by total light” and “it becomes [him]† He maintains this connection with sunlight and nothingness as a human being. Each crew member on the Icarus II represents a different level of spirituality and connection.

With Searle, Kaneda, and Corazon, they never lose touch with what is important to them (their “ultimate concern,” as theologian Paul Tillich calls it), and consequently commit selfless acts. The rest of the crew is more atheist or agnostic, and the characters that survive to the end are a balance of both spiritual and atheist. The diverse and highly representative actors portraying the characters (Rose Byrne, Michelle Yeoh, Benedict Wong, Chris Evans, Hiroyuki Sanada, and an excellent Cillian Murphy performance) are all spot on, even if they remain subordinate to the film’s style and themes. .

In these cases, Boyle told IGN that he was considering how “to meet the source of life in the solar system will inevitably create a spiritual dimension,” regardless of your upbringing. In contrast, Boyle also notes that there is “an arrogance about science” that insists she can control this huge, mysterious object that could be a creation of God. In contrast, Pinbacker, the villain of the film, represents the extreme side of religion and belief.

The vivid cinematography and sound

although Sunshine may have been later surpassed by other visually stunning films such as Gravity and interstellarBoyle’s visuals and special effects still reiterate his point about the sun’s uncontrollable power. The film contains many shots that accentuate the star’s size and dazzling presence against the artificial form of Icarus II. Boyle says in a interview with Eye for Film that he wanted to show “the extremes of beauty and violence” and how “the sun is beautiful” and violent.” Even when the film is about to fall into horror, every shot is painfully beautiful.

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In addition to these striking, intense cinematic images, the sound effects stand out with astonishing clarity: the heat radiating from the sun, the disturbing sounds of a ship hurtling through space, and the muffled sound of Icarus II’s interior. These ingredients create an atmosphere that envelops the viewer and paints a realistic picture of the space. In addition, there is the incredible score by John Murphy and the band Underworld; the music of the film is nothing short of beautiful and often emotionally devastating, with the piece Sunshine (Adagio in D Minor)) which racked up millions of online listens and later accompany the trailers for many other movies.

The end of the sun

Many critics agree that this is the area where Sunshine falls out of its original course. Quentin Tarantino actually reviewed Sunshine, and while he loved it much more than many, he often lines up with others in saying that the ending vainly transitions into horror movie territory in stark contrast to everything that preceded it. It seems the movie turned into a slasher movie when the remaining crew ran into Pinbacker and took an abrupt turn, rather than just a surprise one.

In the closing moments, however, the audience finally sees the sunlight fall back to Earth, a recall to the film’s original themes. While some might call the conclusion shocking, this may be what makes: Sunshine authentic, experimental and extreme, as Boyle intended.

While some of Danny Boyle’s films may be considered underrated, his body of work is impressive and successful, earning him one win and one nomination at the Academy Awards. However, none of his films are as underrated and misunderstood as Sunshine, a beautiful masterpiece that deserves to be seen in cinemas if ever possible. With his complete mastery of the cinematic medium, even if Alex Garland’s film script falters towards the end, Sunshine burns bright.

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