So I just got back from seeing this flick with a friend of mine. We went to go see it at this theater called The Landmark and I've officially noticed that the movie theaters in Los Angeles are just "better" than the theaters in New York. The seats and sound and screens are pretty much across the board better. They seem to take it all more seriously out here. Lots of staff. Cleaner floors. This Landmark theater was particularly over the top too. Assigned seating (bleh). Two workers in the bathroom. (why!) Five ushers. People escort you to your seat. (Do I need to tip?) It was sort of like, 'Gah! Everyone relax! This is just a movie theater!' It made me miss my local theater in Brooklyn with the back breaking seats, burnt popcorn and tickets that they still get ripped in half....
Anyway, I was sort of extra psyched for this movie! All I knew about Sunshine is it was a Denny Boyle flick about a spaceship is flying toward the sun to 'reignite' it somehow. Sounds smart and stupid at the same time! Perfect! Maybe, like Armageddon but like without the terribleness! It seemed like it had some good artsy crap packed in there too! Maybe it could be what Solaris would have been and what The Fountain should have been? Let's do it!
And for a healthy chunk of this flick, I was friggin thrilled. It all looked amazing. The colors and sounds were poppy goodness. The spaceship was all sorts of gigantic. Higher budget than I thought. Although the characters were sort of bland I was ok with it. The visuals and mood overrode any sort of necessary emotional attachment to the people. (I used to read a ton of Arthur C. Clarke. I'm used to no personality characters!) In this flick there was some 2001 flavor, some Alien mystery, some umm... Outland... outlandishness? Or something. (Actually I don't remember anything about Outland except for some grossness in a helmet or something.)
Anyway, for the first hour movie was buzzing. In my head, I was bouncing up and down excited to be watching something so coolio. Everything was building nicely. The beat was good. Ship was big. All was on track. Then a new 'character' showed up and I was completely caught off guard. I was dancing with this flick and all of a sudden it like jabbed me in the ribs and stopped my groove cold. I tried to get back to dancing but I couldn't ignore it. This movie got all saddled up with what I saw as a unignorable mega-flaw. It was almost as if someone barged onto the set and took over the film for a stretch swearing they had an amazzzzing idea. Then after they saw what they did, they handed the controls back and said, 'Sorry...'
It was a tragic call. I thought I was witnessing a classic space age space flick for spaced out dorks like myself. Maybe one of the great ones. All it needed to do was go full blast on trippy for the final third and and afterburner up some of my braincells. I was willing to sacrifice a bushel of em for something coolio! I would have served them up on a platter for some good old fashioned make-no-sense space insanity. But in the end, my braincells were only pleasantly singed....
Three Good Things About this Movie
- There are a bunch of scenes which are downright awesome.
- It was way different than anything I've seen in a while.
- There was a tasty spookiness to it all.
Three Bad Things About this Movie
- I didn't need to know that 80% of dust is made up of human skin. Blech.
(Now you know too...Nelson ha-ha...)
- When you decide to snap their reality... don't snap mine in the process. Rule #1 of reality snapping!
- As much as the movie held together till the end. The last twenty minutes or so were real shakey.
All in all, if you dig yer sci-fi you gotta get your ass up and see this here flick. What I done wrote, harps too hard on the negative. There's plenty in this flick to get you where you need to go and back and another lap. It's chockful of goodness and isolation and excitement and weirdness. That's why it was extra stunning that it decided to take a turn that seemed so stupid... when everything was going so smart.