Gaiam // 2013 // 176 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // November 1st, 2013
An epic mission becomes a deadly crisis.
Time for another entry into the Doomsday Series, the ongoing buffet of made-for-TV disaster movies that do not appear to a) be drying up anytime soon or b) increasing in quality. Perhaps Exploding Sun can provide needed respite? Maybe we have found an exception to the rule?
Nope! Exploding Sun is a turd, and, worse, as has been common with these releases, it's a long turd. How does 176 minutes sound to you? Awesome? Because that's what you're looking at, three hours of mediocrity.
Here's what awaits: in a seminal moment for human history, a first-ever trans-lunar space mission is embarked upon. A collection of international cosmonauts packs into a high-tech spaceship and blast off to test out some brand new space engines. Unfortunately for them -- and Earth! -- the ship is blasted with a solar flare and sends the on-board electronics into a frenzy. Their navigation scrambled, the crew can only watch in horror as they barrel into the sun. But that's not the least of anyone's problems: those fancy new engines, once detonated, will unload major devastation on the Earthlings below.
That's the synopsis for the first half of this heavyweight, devoted primarily to the human drama of astronauts saying their tearful goodbyes before getting incinerated. The second part is the "doomsday" stuff, with low-grade visual effects wreaking havoc. Both parts offer little in remotely compelling content.
Against the backdrop of the usual flurry of CGI and headaches is some painfully contrived melodrama. The main storyline involves a love triangle that goes down in real-time at mission control and yes it's as dopey as it sounds. Two guys wave around their junk trying to impress a girl and -- SPOILER ALERT -- ultimately agree to set aside their machismo and, you know, save the world. There's another arc featuring Julia Ormond as a relief worker in the Middle East but I can't remember anything about it. In fact, I've already forgotten about this entire movie.
The Blu: a decent 1.78:1, 1080p transfer, 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio and a pile of cast interviews for extras.
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Scales of Justice
* 1.78:1 Non-Anamorphic (1080p)
* DTS HD 5.1 Master Audio (English)
* English (SDH)
Running Time: 176 Minutes
Release Year: 2013
MPAA Rating: Not Rated