Sunshine 

 

2007

For one of last year's most criminally overlooked films, look! Up in the sky! It's Danny Boyle's "Sunshine," now rising on DVD. Its shiny title belies the darkness of this thinking man's science-fiction thriller, injected with a third-act horror show.

 

Cillian Murphy ("Red Eye," "Batman Begins") leads a melting-pot cast of astronauts aboard the Icarus II, a ship taking them toward the sun with the implicit mission of re-igniting it, lest our earth below die with it. Something, of course, goes very, very wrong.

 

Many will hate it, as the film challenges, requiring viewers to think. However, those who loved the questions "? not always answered "? posed by the likes of "Solaris" and "2001: A Space Odyssey" will find it engrossing and unpredictable, like an "Alien" for physics majors (degree not required).

 

In his thick English accent, Boyle ("28 Days Later," "Trainspotting") contributes a commentary track, and also champions the art of the short film by including two (not by him) in the extras: the surreal, partly animated "Dad's Dead" and the experimental "Mole Hills." There's also a handful of deleted scenes, but thankfully, the inane death-scene compilation used to promote/spoil the film online last summer is absent.

 

"?Rod Lott

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