Monday, March 30, 2009

Sunshine Cleaning is a bittersweet little film, with a bit of sparkle to it...

Every now and then I like to watch a more independent feel, 'quieter' movie, as an antidote to the Hollywood blockbusters I also enjoy.

Compared to Knowing I saw the other day, which was a sci-fi, thriller and disaster movie rolled into one wrapped up with big CGI special effects, Sunshine Cleaning is the total opposite and more of a character study in the guise of a light hearted and slightly black comedy drama.
Sunshine Cleaning movie poster
The basic premise of the film is that two sisters with very different personalities and outlook on life, go into the lucrative crime scene clean up business. Emily Blunt plays the live-at-home slacker who can't hold down a job, whilst Amy Adams is the determined hard working mum who will do anything to provide the best for her son.
Sunshine Cleaning Amy Adams and Emily Blunt
I think Amy Adams really shines in this movie and proves her versatility as an actress again. This is not your 'Disney Princess' from Enchanted or the mousey noviciate sister from Doubt, just a struggling, but capable single mum who has peaked early in life. She has gone from former popular high school cheerleader to rent-a-maid, who makes do with an affair with a married man and has aspirations of running her own business to prove her worth to her contemporaries.

Both sisters have been emotionally scarred by the suicide of their mother when they were children, but Emily Blunt's character as the younger sister seems more lost than her older sibling.

Filling out their dysfunctional, but loving, family is their dad, Alan Arkin, a hustler whose business scams tend to backfire and Amy Adams' son who is slightly strange and doesn't fit in at school, but provides a lot of the laughs for the film.
Sunshine Cleaning movie cast photo
In addition to some well known stars in the lead roles, it also has Mary Lynn Rajskub who plays Chloe O'Brian in the TV show 24, although I'd like to see her play a happier character one day soon.

It's not essential you see it at the cinema, as it would be equally enjoyable on the small screen, but it is worth watching. Sunshine Cleaning is a slightly sad, but also a quirky and moving film and I give it three *** stars.

Until next time, I'm off to enjoy the last rays of sunshine (no cleaning for me today)...

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