Home Lifestyle Movies that capture the magic of solar eclipses

Movies that capture the magic of solar eclipses

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Just because you didn’t have a front-row seat to the celestial spectacle this week doesn’t mean you can’t join in the excitement.

Directed by Denis Villeneuve and based on the novel by Frank Herbert, ‘Dune’ features stunning visuals and a stellar cast, including Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson, and Zendaya. It explores themes of power, religion, and destiny. Picture: Instagram

APRIL 8 was a big day for some lucky folks because we had a total solar eclipse in town! And when I say “in town”, I mean certain communities in the US were rolling out the red carpet for this cosmic showstopper.

They were expecting millions of eclipse enthusiasts to flood in, ready to boost the local economy and maybe cause a bit of traffic chaos along the way.

The eclipse sadly couldn’t be seen from South Africa (the next visible eclipse in here will be a partial lunar eclipse on September 18).

However, just because you didn’t have a front-row seat to the celestial spectacle doesn’t mean you can’t join in the excitement.

So, let’s dive into a selection of movies that feature the mesmerizing beauty and mystique of the solar eclipse.

Ladyhawke (1985)

Set in a medieval fantasy world, “Ladyhawke” tells the tale of a cursed couple, Navarre and Isabeau, who are doomed to never be together. However, during a rare solar eclipse, the curse is temporarily lifted, allowing them a brief moment of reunion and hope in the midst of darkness.

The Little Vampire (2000)

In this charming family film, a young boy named Tony befriends a vampire named Rudolph and goes on a magical adventure to help him reclaim his lost humanity. Along the way, they encounter a solar eclipse, which plays a vital role in their quest for redemption and friendship.

Apocalypto (2006)

Director Mel Gibson’s epic adventure “Apocalypto” takes viewers on a gripping journey through the ancient Mayan civilisation. Amid the intense action and stunning visuals, a pivotal scene unfolds during a dramatic solar eclipse, adding an extra layer of tension and symbolism to the narrative.

The Eclipse (2009)

For those who prefer a touch of horror and mystery, “The Eclipse” offers a haunting tale of supernatural encounters during a literary festival in Ireland. As darkness descends during a solar eclipse, the lines between reality and the paranormal blur, leaving audiences on the edge of their seats.

Taylor Lautner in the Twilight Saga. Picture: INSTAGRAM

Twilight: Eclipse (2010)

Fans of the “Twilight” saga will remember the third installment, “Eclipse”, which features a mesmerising scene where Bella Swan and Edward Cullen share a romantic moment during a solar eclipse. As the celestial event unfolds in the background, the star-crossed lovers are reminded of the challenges they face in their supernatural love story.

The Cosmic Egg (2015)

While there may not be as many South African movies featuring solar eclipses as there are from other regions, one notable film does come to mind.

Directed by Sven Harding, “The Cosmic Egg” is a South African sci-fi adventure that explores themes of mythology, spirituality, and environmentalism.

The film follows a group of young adventurers who embark on a quest to stop an evil corporation from exploiting a sacred site known as the Cosmic Egg. Along their journey, they encounter celestial phenomena, including a solar eclipse, which plays a significant role in the story’s climax.

The Darkest Minds (2018)

In a dystopian future where a pandemic kills most of America’s children and leaves the survivors with special abilities, a group of teenagers with powers seek refuge from the government. During their journey, they encounter a solar eclipse, which serves as a moment of reflection and solidarity as they continue their fight for freedom.

Dune 1 and 2 (2024)

“Dune” is a science fiction epic set in a distant future where humanity has spread across the galaxy. The story follows the young nobleman Paul Atreides, whose family is tasked with governing the desert planet Arrakis, the only source of a valuable spice called melange.

As Paul and his family navigate the treacherous political landscape of Arrakis, they become embroiled in a conflict with rival noble houses and the native Fremen people who inhabit the planet’s harsh desert environment.

Directed by Denis Villeneuve and based on the novel by Frank Herbert, “Dune” features stunning visuals and a stellar cast, including Timothée Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya. It explores themes of power, religion and destiny.

Film-maker Steven Spielberg has expressed enthusiastic support for the upcoming sequel to “Dune”, directed by Denis Villeneuve. Spielberg, known for his contributions to cinema, including classics like “Jurassic Park” and “Schindler’s List”, offered high praise for Villeneuve’s work on the sequel.

“This is truly a visual epic, and it’s also filled with deeply, deeply drawn characters,” Spielberg said.

“Yet the dialogue is very sparse when you look at it proportionately to the running time of the film. It’s such cinema.

“The shots are so painterly, yet there’s not an angle or single set-up that’s pretentious… you have made one of the most brilliant science fiction films I have ever seen.”

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