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Sunshine (2007)

R  |   |  Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller  |  27 July 2007 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.3/10 from 179,624 users   Metascore: 64/100
Reviews: 788 user | 303 critic | 34 from Metacritic.com

A team of international astronauts is sent on a dangerous mission to reignite the dying Sun with a nuclear fission bomb in 2057.



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1 win & 16 nominations. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Paloma Baeza ...
Archie Macdonald ...
Sylvie Macdonald ...
Icarus (voice)


50 years into the future, the Sun begins to die, and Earth is dying as a result. A team of astronauts are sent to revive the Sun - but the mission fails. Seven years later, a new team is sent to finish the mission as mankind's last hope. Written by harpster_2004@yahoo.co.uk

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

sun | icarus | earth | astronaut | future | See All (81) »


If it dies, so do we. See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

27 July 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Sunce  »

Box Office


£26,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

£1,021,063 (UK) (6 April 2007)


$3,675,072 (USA) (12 October 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


The plot does not revolve around the sun dying in the normal sense: this is not due for around five billion years based on our understanding of nuclear fusion. It has instead been "infected" with a "Q-ball" - a supersymmetric nucleus, left over from the big bang - that is disrupting the normal matter. This is a theoretical particle that scientists at CERN are currently trying to confirm, and was one of the many contributions of the science advisor. The film's bomb is meant to blast the Q-ball to its constituent parts which will then naturally decay, allowing the sun to return to normal. See more »


Critical damage is caused to Icarus II by sunlight reflecting off a communications tower onto the structure. Yet, when Icarus II approaches Icarus I - much closer to the sun - its shield reflects sunlight onto the rear of Icarus I with no ill-effects to that ship at all. See more »


[first lines]
Capa: Our sun is dying. Mankind faces extinction. Seven years ago the Icarus project sent a mission to restart the sun but that mission was lost before it reached the star. Sixteen months ago, I, Robert Capa, and a crew of seven left earth frozen in a solar winter. Our payload a stellar bomb with a mass equivalent to Manhattan Island. Our purpose to create a star within a star.
[long pause]
Capa: Eight astronauts strapped to the back of a bomb. My bomb. Welcome to the Icarus Two.
See more »

Crazy Credits

Scenes from the film are played during the end credits. See more »


To Heal
Performed by Underworld
Courtesy of Ato Records / Red
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

To say there is nothing new under the sun is usually apt in sunny Hollywood, but not this time
22 April 2007 | by (Sweden) – See all my reviews

With a suitably international and diverse cast to simulate the equivalent crew onboard the Icarus II ("Icarus I" didn't fare so well), director Danny Boyle fledges a science fiction that gains momentum at its very first image – and does not halt until the end credits roll. To be perfectly frank, this is one of the most unbearably exciting films for whose entire duration I have ever squirmed in my seat for at the theatre.

On a mission to re-ignite the sun by detonating a bomb ("the size of Manhattan island", Cillian Murphy's physicist nods to American audiences and cause me to suffer horrible flashbacks to Armaggeddon's "it's the size of Texas" assessment) human lives are expendable and rationalized by rank. There are scientists, astronauts and various specialists on Icarus II who are all poised on the brink of sacrificing themselves for the greater good of mankind. Diverse in the sense that there are both men and women, and few characters are 'black or white' (morally, and physically), it does puzzle me that New Zealanders, Aussies and Irishmen have been arbitrarily converted into Americans. The crew is nevertheless highly impressive and professional, with a few minor exceptions for plot-propelling purposes, like when someone does something very stupid.

There is noticeably a tremendous visual sense throughout "Sunshine" with a screen that is awash with sparkling explosions and each frame saturated with bright colours and dimmed contrasts. There is no genre-transcending perhaps, and most probably its visuals are under the mercy of dating effects, but for now this is truly the crème de la crème of science fiction, take my word for it. Even the cinematography within the spaceship alleys and chambers is compelling and sweeps through Icarus II with great tracking shots. Amongst other films, Danny Boyle was inspired by Das Boot and certainly there are traces of the same claustrophobia underpinning the setting, but ultimately he opted for a more habitable environment to make it believable (like humanity would ship off its only hope with a crummy, crowded old vessel).

To justify the occasional bouts of sci-fi clichés, I'd like to firstly point out that it's not like "Sunshine" traffics in stereotypes or resorts to formulaic elements, and secondly that I believe certain clichés have evolved for a reason – they quite clearly stand the test of time. There are within science fiction some staples that are simply necessary to define its genre, such as the dutiful human sacrifices to up the drama, the internal mutinies to instill the uncertainty in the operation, the nightmarish conditions onboard the ship to suck you in, the technical jargon of velocities and shield angles that spits like bullet-fire to give the film a firm scientific footing, and finally the epic music to elevate suspense. "Sunshine" incorporates and melts together all of the aforementioned, but in militantly non-formulaic ways that only add to the experience. As a potent example, there isn't just pedestrian classical tunes recycled from 2001 and filtered through {insert rote Hollywood composer here}'s score – it is puffed full of beautiful piano crescendos that are almost incongruous to the sci-fi vibe, and the cumulative effect is wonderful.

"Sunshine" is sporadically blemished by minor faults, such as when Murphy's Law is being followed a bit too rigorously to up the excitement. Luckily, all of this is washed away or camouflaged when Boyle serves up his next goosebumps-inducing, gasp-eliciting spectacle – be it a horror twist or an impossibly epic action stunt. On the topic of the former, and clearly the chiasma at which "Alien" comparisons have been drawn, there is a magnificently creepy horror/mystery vibe interlacing the story in space. On top of this, Danny Boyle also dabbles in existentialism (a little too much if you ask me), making this into one of the most ambitious sci-fi turns ever made. In this way, maybe "Sunshine" is not primed to collect awards or even serve as meat for mainstream Hollywood, but I think it's safe to crown it the "Alien" of the 21st century.

8 out of 10

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The concept of this film is LAUGHABLE !! Ehab-Elayyan
THIS MOVIE!!! pufduff
Would you have gone off course to Icarus I? Hayley7
Was anyone else blown away by this movie? KingLane
Tarantino's criticism is a bit hypocritical heisenberg83
There's just too much suspension of disbelief that has to happen, here PiaPuffytail
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