Sunshine – the movie (1999)

220px-Sunshine_1999_posterToday we watched the movie Sunshine (1999) with Ralph Fiennes, Rachel Weiss and William Hurt. The movie was nominated to 3 Golden Globe Awards, I can´t understand why…
Technically speaking, I thought the movie could do much better. From a historical perspective, I loved it.
This is a historical movie that tells the history of Hungary through the fortune or mis-fortune of a Hungarian family since the Austro-Hungarian Empire. I cannot evaluate the accuracy of the facts, but the movie is full of events that I know were true in Hungary and Central Europe. Bring to discussion themes like Nazism, communism, religion, identity and freedom. If you would like to know a little more about the past of Hungary, here is a good start. Also you can see some beautiful buildings like the Parliament for example.
For me the most interesting part was the scenes about the Revolution of 1956. I am particularly curious about this revolution and the effects still nowadays on the Hungarian life. When I saw the scenes of the movie mixed with real scenes of documentaries from that time black and white, it was specially touching and I could recognize the street where I live and the Russian tanks aroung. Then I understood why during the National Holiday related to that event the population comes to my neighborhood to show their respect for the brave Hungarians from that day. Very touching!

What I found at Wikipedia is that though fictional, the film weaves events drawn from several real sources into the story. The Sunshine family’s liquor business was based on the Zwack family’s liquor brand Unicum. One of Fiennes’s three roles is based at least partly on Hungarian Olympian Attila Petschauer, but also includes allusions to the early life of Miksa Fenyő and other famous Hungarians of Jewish origin who suffered from anti-Semitism and the persecution of Jews in World War II Hungary. Another role in the film which is similar to that of a historic person is the character Andor Knorr played by William Hurt which closely resembles the latter part of the life of László Rajk.



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great hungarian plain

a Seattleite teaching university in eastern Hungary

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