YMMV / Sunshine

  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • Word of God is that Mace has had a crush on Cassie for years. Is the tension between him and Capa at least partially due to the growing bond between him and Cassie?
    • Word of God also reveals that Cassie aborted a pregnancy before the mission. So is her attitude more of a Stepford Smiler deal?
  • Broken Base:
    • Some fans think it's an excellent movie overall, while some love the first half but hate the Genre Shift when Pinbacker shows up.
    • There are debates about whether Mace calling Capa out towards the end of the second act is a huge dick move or completely justified. Capa is of course bound to be feeling guilt about the fact that he's caused certain death for all of them and it is almost needlessly cruel of Mace to remind him of that. On the other, Capa is entirely responsible for everything that went wrong and ended up nearly jeopardising the mission out of paranoia.
  • Counterpart Comparison: Pinbacker is reminiscent of Weir from Event Horizon. Both succumb to insanity, hunt the crews of doomed spaceships, believe they are carrying out the will of a higher being, and run around naked, bald, and disfigured (Pinbacker is horrifically burned, while Weir is covered in lacerations).
  • Crowning Music of Awesome:
    • John Murphy outdoes himself with an absolutely beautiful main theme, and various other great tracks.
    • Sunshine (Adagio in D Minor). Why yes. Yes you have heard this song everywhere The fact it was remixed for Kick-Ass is testament to the original.
    • Underworld's uplifting ambient track "To Heal," is used to wonderful effect in the finale when Capa comes face-to-face with the sun and dies knowing he has succeeded. On the soundtrack the song has rather fittingly been re-titled "Capa Meets The Sun."
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: It's widely agreed that Chris Evans walks away with this movie.
  • Fridge Horror:
    • More of Fridge Sadness, really (Fridge Tearjerker?). The friends and families of the crew members could see from Earth that the crew had succeeded, but had no way of knowing that they'd all died in the process. They wouldn't be able to contact them to find out that there was nobody there due to the dead zone around the sun, and they would just be waiting for the ship to come back not knowing that it never will, and would never have any way of knowing what happened on the it.
    • All the grey dust on Icarus 1 - they mention that most dust comes from human skin (incorrect) but in their case, it may actually be correct - the dust is the burned off skin of the crew, all of whom were fried.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    "Do you think that mankind will ever land...on the sun?"
    • "Our purpose? To create a star within a star." Cue Inception, starring Cillian Murphy, and its myriad of "X within an X" jokes...
    • Hey, Captain America/Curtis from Snowpiercer just froze to death.
    • A forgotten 1990 film (directed by the legendary Alan Smithee) called Solar Crisis had a similar premise as Sunshine.
  • Retroactive Recognition: In actual fact he's so hidden by make-up and freaky camerawork that you're unlikely to recognise him, but Mark Strong's name turning up in the closing credits has retroactively become a "Wait, what!?" moment. We do see of his video logs at the beginning though, out of the makeup.
  • Tearjerker: Capa's Freak Out when it looks like all life on Earth might die because he tripped over a doorframe.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: A lot of character backstories as noted on the main page are very interesting but the movie doesn't touch on them. Cassie aborted a pregnancy right before the mission, Harvey is desperate to get home to his wife, Mace has a crush on Cassie and Kaneda had met Pinbacker personally. A lot of these details could have been expanded upon.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • If one looks at the backstory for Trey, it makes him a little less sympathetic when it comes to messing up the recaculations. Basically it's a job that Icarus herself could do, but he does it personally because he's a Control Freak who prefers to do everything himself. So he got Kaneda killed and the oxygen garden destroyed because he didn't feel like trusting a machine.
    • Harvey's backstory is that he misses his wife and just wants to get back home to her. That's never mentioned once in the film and he comes across like a Dirty Coward - never once explaining himself or apologising.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The detonation is a beautiful sight to behold. Also, the many shots of the Sun