Monday, December 01, 2008


2007, UK, directed by Danny Boyle

While it's made with great skill, and with careful attention to the realities of life on a spaceship, I spent most of the running time of Sunshine thinking of the other films it reminded me of - surely not the makers' primary intention. While it's hard for any film of this nature to escape comparison with 2001: A Space Odyssey, the parallels occasionally seem distractingly obvious, while other scenes are reminiscent of Alien or Solaris (particularly the visual tones of Steven Soderbergh's remake). At times, the film cries out for the occasional touch of humour: it examines human beings on the literal fringes, and there's something elemental in many of the character outcomes, but along the way they come to seem lacking in certain of the qualities we take for granted back on earth (as in his earlier film with Danny Boyle, 28 Days Later, Cillian Murphy gives an deeply committed, physical performance, but his character here responds to extraordinary circumstances in a much more self-consciously serious manner).

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Boston, Massachusetts, United States