Sunshine Cleaning (2008)
Reviewed on 2009 September 24
Quiet indie-feeling movie about a pair of siblings who haven't forged a career (or life) path, and how one tries to make her way in a grimy but lucrative business.
Rose (Amy Adams) is a former head cheerleader whose life didn’t turn out the way she wanted in any fashion: she was high school royalty, and is now a thirty-something single mother working as a maid. Her personal life is messy too but at least she's secure in her job; her sister Norah (Emily Blunt) is a semi-goth who lives at home with her dad (Alan Arkin) because her jobs never quite pan out. Norah is a wonderful aunt to Rose’s son, but she is even less settled than Rose. One day she learns that there’s good money to be made in cleaning up crime scenes, and she decides this is what she and her sister should do.
This was somewhat slow-moving because it focused so much on the character development and not the action, but the acting buoyed it along. Luckily my friends loathe those cloying baby showers as much as I do and I thought that whole sequence was very good, and conveyed a lot with very little dialogue. It was especially interesting to watch the character of Rose cope and change, and Emily Blunt is always entertaining: she was very funny as the babysitter we always wanted when we were kids, armed with sugary snacks and scary stories. Once the cleaning service was established I felt it poked along in places, but it’s still a good Sunday afternoon movie.
Two chocolate morsels and some pecan pie.