If you liked this excellent science fiction film from Danny Boyle, then check out these movies like Sunshine that we think you’ll enjoy.
50 years in the future, eight astronauts are travelling to the Sun. They are a dying Earth’s last hope after the original Icarus missions failed. They have to drop a massive nuclear bomb into the sun, to kickstart the dying star. However, even the sharpest minds become irrational, as they grow closer to the unimagine pressure of the sun.
Sunshine is a genius film. Danny Boyle creates a sense of intense tension as the film progresses and our astronauts come face to face with the sun. The film makes you feel a lot of emotions the astronauts are feeling. The feeling of extreme claustrophobia, being stuck in a metal box with nothing around you for millions of miles, only empty space. To be far away from for years and years stuck with the same people, all slowly losing their minds under the influence of the sun.
At the time of its release, it didn’t do so well, but as the years have passed, Sunshine has become something of a cult classic. It’s an underrated film that needs to be appreciated a lot more. If you liked Sunshine, and want to watch similar movies, check the films below.
Also Check Out: 10 Seriously Awesome Sci-Fi Movies like Super 8
List of Movies Like Sunshine(2007)
- Event Horizon
- Children of Men
- Europa Report
- Ad Astra
- 2001: Space Odyssey
- The Martian
Honourable Mention – The Expanse
Same Bell is an astronaut who been on working on the dark side of the moon. He maintains a research and mining facility that harvests the moon’s Helium to send to the earth. At the end of his 3-year contract, he prepares to go back to earth, but things go very, very wrong. I won’t spoil the whole thing, you have to watch it to experience it.
Moon is one of the best sci-fi films I’ve ever seen and it’s very, very similar to Sunshine in a low of ways. It makes you feel the loneliness and isolation stuck on another planet, all by yourself with no company and no contact with the human world. The film makes you question your own mind and sanity as well as your sense of reality as the story progresses. If you like slow-burn, sci-fi thrillers, you have got to watch this film.
At first, Event Horizon seems your typical sci-fi film set in space, in the future. There is a group of astronauts on a mission to rescue and investigate the truth about a spaceship that disappeared inside a black hole years ago. As the story unfolds, you quickly come to realize, it so much more than sci-fi, it’s a horror film set in space and a very good one.
It’s a very atmospheric film with a very creepy vibe. There are no cheap jump scares and ghosts, the real horror comes in the form of the unknown vastness of space. Fear is a strong emotion and you can feel it in all the characters, as they try and fulfill their mission, fighting against a vast scary unknown entity.
As the story progresses, the crew of the spaceship experience increasingly disturbing things. There wouldn’t be much point in spoiling any more of the plot here, but I would definitely recommend this for the fans of sci-fi horror and thrillers.
The movie Contact is about Dr Ellie Arroway and how she handles being alone in a world without family or close friends. It’s her love for science and her curiosity for all things unknown that keeps her going. Ellie is working in a scientific military base when she apparently receives a message from outer space.
The film in turn makes you think about how isolated all of us are. a race stuck on a large spinning ball, alone with no other visible life, outside of our planet. It’s adapted from a book by Carl Sagan and is an exploration of Religion vs Science.
With such a heavy subject matter, the reviews for the film are very polarizing. However, I personally love the film. It’s a movie that everyone should get to watch at least once in their lives.
Children of Men
I am not sure I am qualified to talk about this masterpiece of a film, but I’ll give it a go. Children of Men is universally thought of as one of the best sci-fi films ever, if not the best. The film is set in the future, where all women have become infertile and humans have stopped reproducing. In this cruel dystopian world, a miracle happens, and a woman gets pregnant and the protagonist helps her escape to a safe sanctuary. To reveal any more would be a crime.
The film delves into a lot of socio-political issues but manages to maintain the title of being a science fiction film first. It portrays a disturbingly real image of what the future of the human race could look like through a very sophisticated lens. The acting and cinematography are impeccable. It’s a must-watch for all sci-fi enthusiasts.
Six astronauts go on a journey of exploration to the moon Europa, one of Jupiter’s moon. There has been a discovery of microorganisms under the icy ocean surface of the moon and our crew is out to explore them.
What we see in the film is the recorded footage of the crews’ camera footage. It’s a found-footage horror film, set in space. This film was made on a relatively low budget compared to most of the films on this list but it manages to utilize its limited resources very effectively.
It’s primarily a film in the of a study of human psychology with the search for extraterrestrial life as the plot device. It deals with the reality of exploring life outside of earth and what it’s consequences could be. It’s an interesting film that fans of Sunshine should definitely check out.
Ad Astra has received a lot of hate, and it’s understandable. It’s a misunderstood film. It’s an emotional drama set in space, rather than a film about space travel. Ad Astra is the story of a troubled man(Brad Pitt) with has unresolved father issues about abandonment.
His astronaut father leaves him on earth as a child, never to come back. To seek closure and explore what happened to his father, Brad Pitt’s character sets out on a journey in space to look for his father, helped by the government who is also looking for him.
Just like in the movie Sunshine, the film makes you think about all the things we take for granted like family, relationships, friends, and what the real important things in life are. It’s not the best film on the list, but if you’re feeling particularly bored, you should give Ad Astra a chance.
Two Astronauts wake up in a spaceship with no memory of who they are how they got there. While one of them stays behind looking for what their mission might be and awaiting contact from anyone, the other ventures out into the big ship and quickly comes to the realization that they are not alone on the ship. There’s something sinister in there, intent on hunting them.
The movie has a lot of psychological aspects like Sunshine. Pandorum takes a lot of ideas from other films like Alien and The Descent, but it’s not a bad thing. The story can feel somewhat similar to Event Horizon but this combination of good ideas from different sources, executed well results in a well made, polished film. Pandorum is an underrated horror sci-fi that you should definitely check out. It has a lot of thrills to offer, from psychological to real horror.
If you liked the philosophical, psychological aspect of the movie Sunshine, then you’ll the movie Solaris. It explores the human condition in a way that movies like Contact and 2001 do. Solaris is not about space adventures or a thriller story, it has more to do with ideas and concepts.
A lot of people hate Solaris and if you’re looking for action and hardcore sci-fi, this one might not be for you. That being said it’s a great film. The cast does a great job and the production is top-notch. George Clooney is brilliant as always. It’s a smartly written, well thought out film that keeps you thinking about it days after you’ve watched it. If you are in need of some intellectual entertainment, Solaris is the film for you.
All films of Lars Von Trier are very hard to recommend, as the reviews for all of his work are heavily polarised. People either hate his films or love them to death. Although I’m not a big Lars Von Trier Fan, Melancholia holds a very special place in my heart. I feel like I can relate to Kirsten Dunst’s character a lot. The way she does on a self-destructive streak and then falls into a heavy depression was eerily reminiscent of my own experiences.
As the crew is heading towards the Sun to their inevitable end, there’s a large planet hurtling through space coming closer and closer to the earth. I don’t want to spoil it, but it’s very much like Sunshine in how the characters behave when faced with threats beyond their comprehension. Melancholia is grand in scope, yet will make you feel helpless. If depression had a visual representation, it’s Melancholia. Please give this film a watch, it’s one of my favorites.
2001 A Space Odyssey
2001 A Space Odyssey is a legendary film by the master of the craft Stanley Kubric. I can’t really say anything about this film that hasn’t been said before. 2001 is widely considered to be the best sci-fi film ever made. When it was made in 1968 it was generations ahead of its time.
2001 has inspired and influenced hundreds of films that came after and it is regarded as the gold standard of filmmaking. This film is a technological marvel, a once in a lifetime type of film. Although it’s over 50 years old now, the genius of the film and the visual effects still hold up. It could be compared to what James Cameron did with Avatar Hollywood. Seriously, watch it if you still haven’t.
After a crew of Astronauts get stuck in the middle of a giant sandstorm on the planet of Mars, they have no choice but to abandon the mission and get out of the planet. Mark Watney, one of the crew, is missing and is presumed dead, so they leave the planet without him. However, Watney survives, the only man remaining on with very limited resources.
The Martian is a story of a man who survives when all odds are stacked against him and he does it with a smile and a good attitude. We can all learn a little bit about perseverance in the face of insurmountable odds from Matt Damon’s character. The Martian is an excellent lighthearted sci-fi flick and you should watch it.