Movie: Attempting to see Sunshine
Tonight started out to be quite a cool evening. Not only were we going to be seeing the new Danny Boyle directed, sci-fi flick, SUNSHINE, a month before it hits the cinemas in wide release, but following the movie Danny Boyle and one of the film’s stars, Rose Byrne, would be sitting down for a Q&A session with the audience.
Sadly though, about 40 minutes (maybe less) into the screening of Sunshine something happened that I can only describe as a right royal cluster-fuck. For a moment nobody was sure what they were seeing: A dream sequence maybe? After a few more moments the thought started to creep into the back of my mind that there was a very good chance that Danny Boyle and whoever the hell let him release this piss-poor attempt at emulating Stanley Kubrick needed to be lined up and shot.
So, what was really going on? Well, we were seeing what appeared to be the second last reel of the film… right after the first… and it was upside down… and, I kid you not, it was playing in reverse! Then, right before we got to the bit where the monkeys start whacking the monolith with their bones, the projection room finally woke up to the error and hit the lights.
After about 40 minutes we were told that they’d just discovered that the same problem was identified in the other reel, and so we would have to wait even longer before the film could commence again. At this point we were also informed that should we wish to leave that our tickets would be refunded. Having been extremely impressed with Sunshine right up until the point at which it had started playing backwards, we decided to stick it out.
We didn’t have to wait too long before the film started playing again. And then we didn’t have to wait long before a large portion of the audience erupted with shouts of “WRONG REEL!”. Yeap, somewhere in the mix up they’d skipped a reel or two and no-one had a clue what was happening. However, it has to be said that by the time that plug was again pulled on the failed screening (for the final time) we’d again been gripped by the action taking place on the screen.
By this stage the screening was written off as a total loss and the Q&A was started.
I wish I had more to say about the Q&A and the film itself, but there was very little in the way of quotable bites from either Boyle or Byrne. What we did get to see of the film was extremely gripping and dripping with the intensity that I’d hoped for.
Of the Q&A the one thing that is worth stating is that even though the two of them were probably extremely pissed off and probably even a little embarrassed by the debacle that the evening had become, they both handled themselves extremely well, taking the whole affair in their stride.