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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

    This Week at SUMO


    I’m pretty positive Wall-E will win an Oscar—so if you haven’t already seen it, go now so you can talk about how great it is when the Academy Awards roll around. If you did see it this summer, go see it again this weekend, too. It’s that good.

    Wall-E is easily charming. It tackles a serious topic—taking care of the earth—with hope, resulting in a film that is pure and lovely. Even the parts of the film that could be cynical or satirical aren’t because the film is just so innocently honest. The Earth buried in garbage where Wall-E is abandoned could easily have been an Orwellian hell or Boyle’s Sunshine. But Wall-E, the puppy-like robot, works away to a bright, encouraging tune from Hello Dolly. When a new robot arrives on a mission, Wall-E is infatuated. Their friendship grows sweetly—and I was completely engrossed in their world even though there was no dialogue. The robots are so expressive you don’t need hear any words (besides their calls of Waaally and eevvah). Wall-E’s antics are funny, and the quality and scale of animation is just incredible.

    The only complaints I’ve read about Wall-E (which got an impressive 97% rating on is that the first half hour is so good the rest just can’t quite compare. I think the movie as a whole works nicely. I was rooting for and empathizing with Wall-E and his friends for the whole film. It’s a feel-good film because Wall-E’s success feels like your own. It’s not even too adorable. Wall-E is too sincere to be cutesy.

    Everyone should go see Wall-E this weekend. It’s not only a good story, but you’ll leave wanting to be kinder and to spend more time outside. I wouldn’t be surprised if Wall-E saves the Earth, cures cancer, fixes the economy and ends road rage by Oscar night.


    I haven’t seen Danny Boyle’s other movies; I’ve heard Trainspotting and 28 Days Later are intense, so I was expecting Sunshine to be a serious movie. Nonetheless, I wasn’t prepared for this nail-biting, knee-jiggling, cover-you-eyes-and-peek-through-your-fingers kind of movie. Sunshine is a mind warp—and a good film.

    I’m usually not into this kind of movie, but Boyle’s first Sci-Fi project goes way beyond silly little green men. I was sucked in from the start when Boyle dropped me 50 years from now into the middle of a rescue mission to reignite a dying sun. I really did feel like I was there, too— the set, the filming, the color all combine to give a sense of claustrophobia and intensity. Sunshine starts out as a powerful psychological drama. Its focus is revealing the tensions between and motivations of the members of the rescue mission. The cast is, for the most part, up to this challenge. The film grows into an intriguing mystery and eventually devolves into horror.

    The writing isn’t inspired, but the ideas are. Like the Matrix (but without Keanu) and Fight Club, Sunshine provokes deep, existential questions through the guise of an action movie. This film tackles everything too—its plot and characters bring up ideas about science, philosophy, religion, morality, psychology and humanity. This is why the ending didn’t quite work for me. For the last third of the film, I was trying to sort out the heavy and provocative themes of the movie, while being engaged (literally on the edge of my seat) in the suspense and tense action. I really didn’t need to worry about a crazed villain attacking the hero. It was a little too much to invest in.

    Sunshine’s CGI effects are extremely well done. There are several breathtaking scenes, and the second to last is one of the coolest and most beautiful from the movies I’ve seen.

    Sunshine isn’t a light-hearted movie. Don’t go see it if you’re squeamish or if you hate being scared. Do go see it if you need a break from school, but not from thinking. Sunshine will bring you to a different world and state of mind. Basically, Sunshine is kind of a trip.

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