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Sunshine Cleaning (2008)

Amy AdamsEmily BluntAlan ArkinJason Spevack
Christine Jeffs


Sunshine Cleaning (2008) is a English,Spanish movie. Christine Jeffs has directed this movie. Amy Adams,Emily Blunt,Alan Arkin,Jason Spevack are the starring of this movie. It was released in 2008. Sunshine Cleaning (2008) is considered one of the best Comedy,Drama movie in India and around the world.

A family. Rose and Norah, in Albuquerque, lost their mother when they were young. Rose is responsible - a housecleaner, raising her seven-year-old son Oscar. She's also having an affair with Mac, a married cop, her high-school sweetheart. Norah can't hold a job. Their dad, Joe, is quirky. When Oscar is expelled for odd behavior, Rose wants to earn enough to send him to private school. Mac suggests she clean up after crime scenes, suicides, and deaths that go undiscovered for awhile. Rose enlists Norah, and Sunshine Cleaners is born. Norah bonds with the dead, Rose finds out that it's a regulated business, and complications arise. Can a family marked by tragedy sort things out?

Sunshine Cleaning (2008) Reviews

  • Working Class Respect


    I quite liked the film. I would watch Amy Adams stare at grass and Emily Blunt is always top notch. One thing that stuck out for me about the film was that it offers a look at real working-class people doing real work, and does so in a respectful manner. Rose tries to put a positive spin on her post-mortem cleanup work to gathered yuppies in an awkward social setting and is clearly defensive. But you can see her coming to value the work for the good it does. There is nothing wrong with adventure thrillers about high crimes and misdemeanors, about the far-too-well-to-do, and about easy lives, but it is heartening to see hard-scrabble work valued, not just as a barrier to be overcome but as a thing that has intrinsic value and that does real good. Rose and Nora take on work that the yuppie ladies would never dream of tackling, and do real good for real people. This is a film that does not dazzle us with fireworks or glitter, but it has heart. We like that.

  • A Blunt Ray of Sunshine through the Darkness


    A struggling single mom named Rose (Amy Adams in her comedy/drama wheelhouse) gets tired of working for a maid service and boldly decides to branch out into crime scene clean-up with her lay-about sister Norah (Emily Blunt, ironically named) in Christine Jeffs' observant and easy-going "Sunshine Cleaning". Although it has been marketed as one of those quirky dramedies the studios love to shove down our throats every year, Jeffs' film (from a solid screenplay from Megan Holley) is more in tune with somber yet hopeful indie character studies. The film deals with some dark subject matter and poignantly explores grief and family dysfunction but maintains a positive outlook and contains some solid situational laughs. The combination of an interesting set-up, smart writing, likable characters and winning performances make the film, even when it teeter-totters from dark to sappy, go down smooth. None of the characters seem forced upon us, unlike the overtly quirky family from "Little Miss Sunshine" or the stylized dialog spewing teens from "Juno". These characters talk and interact like real people and there's a naturalism in the way their relationships develop. It makes for engaged viewing when a film like this doesn't feel the need to explain every detail or tie up every loose end so nicely. Some subplots involving Norah taking a personal interest in one of the clean-up jobs that leads to an awkward friendship with a blood-bank worker (Mary Lynn Rajskub of "24" fame) or a one-armed supply store guy (Clifton Collins Jr.) who takes a shine to Rose aren't resolved in a typical fashion, and some things are never made known or left open-ended. It makes the film feel truer to life. Even when Rose's precocious kid (Jason Spevack) tries to talk to heaven on a CB radio in what would normally be considered a contrived and cutesy moment, you feel like you've grown to know the character and it's just something he would do. Likewise, Alan Arkin as the sisters' scheming entrepreneurial father behaves and acts like a real guy who's had to struggle raising two girls alone and is just trying to help them catch a break. Amy Adams, of course, is an absolute delight. Something about her girl-next-door good looks combined with her innate talents as a comedienne and her theatrical background that produces some of the best facial expressions and crying-on-cue you'll ever see make her the perfect choice for this type of role. While it's easy to sing the praises of Adams, and she's never been more endearing or relatable than here, Emily Blunt proves to be an excellent foil. It's Blunt's sharp portrayal and her character's story arc that provide the film its emotional weight. Both actresses deserve to be remembered come awards season, and "Sunshine Cleaning" is that rare spring-time bird: a film worthy of buzz.

  • Adams and Blunt are remarkable


    Of late, independent films seem to fall into three ruts; the quirky indie film, the contrived indie film and the quirkily contrived indie film. Thankfully, for the most part, Sunshine Cleaning manages to avoid these associated pitfalls, and is instead a benchmark for how two sensational performances can succeed in drastically improving the quality of a film. These aforementioned indie clichés are quite the conundrum when looked at thoughtfully. The birth of independent film-making stemmed from creativity and desire to be liberated from the shadow of the major movie conglomerates. Yet now, most of these offbeat flicks are as cold and calculated as any big budget summer movie and often drown in wacky plots and bizarre characters which are not of what free film should be an expression. Starring the consistently stellar and always delightful leading ladies of Amy Adams and Emily Blunt, Sunshine Cleaning tells the bittersweet story of two sisters (Adams and Blunt) and their struggles to purge the horror of their mother's suicide and live normal lives. Adams as Rose and Blunt as Norah are polar opposites; Rose was the head cheerleader in high school and aches to regain that notoriety in her adult life and Norah the 'screw-up', the black sheep of the family. They are held together loosely by Rose's son Oscar and their father (Alan Arkin) that is until they find themselves in need of work. Through a less than professional police connection of Rose's (Steve Zahn) they come to start a crime scene cleanup service called Sunshine Cleaning and while they sought money, they ended up finding something more profound. Adams and Blunt truly are remarkable and give bonafide Oscar worthy performances. Their characters never fall to any deprecating indie quirks, and are fully realized individuals. Zahn is solid in a smaller role, as is Clifton Collins Jr. as a clean-up store owner and all lend to a story that did not by any means conclude where I was suspecting. Many of the subplots are left open, but not in a unsatisfying way and while featuring ups and downs along the way, Sunshine Cleaning manages to find a hopeful tone without being sticky sweet. Perhaps by favourite aspect outside of the performances was Adam's character. We have seen in many films the former cheerleader who has grown up under the shadow of the 'losers' of their school, but never have I seen such an honest look from the view of the former. Perhaps this is a testament to Adams acting skills, but I was impressed nevertheless. Sunshine Cleaning keeps you involved based on characters alone. There is certainly humour, tragedy and emotion to drive the story but all is born from the relationship between this broken family. I wish fresh faced director Christine Jeffs had forgone all the trends of the recent independent film movement, but there is still more then enough to admire about Sunshine Cleaning, and even more to love.

  • Well crafted family story


    I find that when people ask me what this movie is about I have a hard time successfully telling them. Read the synopsis by all means, but like most summaries it barely scratches the surface. It's a story about a mother who leaves her family in the most permanent way imaginable. It's about a father struggling to maintain his unflappable optimism, a sister whose self-esteem leads her into self-sabotaging habits, another who is in complete emotional freefall, a son who is becoming aware of his family's dynamic and how it compares to the rest of the world's and how they manage to regain their footing by pursuing a very unusual profession. At its heart it is always about family. At their best Amy Adams and Emily Blunt are some of the most talented actresses working today and I was happy to see them both in a script worthy of their skills. Both are gifted at line delivery, but some of their most powerful scenes are nonverbal. The dynamic between all the characters is thoroughly real and enjoyable. I found myself very satisfied by all their resolutions. It was an excellent story to watch unfold.

  • "Sunshine Cleaning" Shines


    In confronting her big sister Rose (Amy Adams), emotionally bare Norah (Emily Blunt) declares, "I don't need you to take care of me anymore. It's not your job… It never was." Director Christine Jeffs's "Sunshine Cleaning" is very unexpected, in the best way. It is funny and wonderfully quirky. The surprise is its poignancy and brilliant resolve. Amy Adams and Emily Blunt are amazing, and have a stark chemistry. Their relationship is unquestioned love, and explosive conflict. Meg Holly's screenplay set in Albuquerque, New Mexico follows the unlikely story of Rose and Norah as they pursue their business in the biohazard removal/ crime scene cleaning service. Now that is novel. But "Sunshine Cleaning" is really about touchingly completing Rose and Norah's relationship with their dead mother. Adams balances vulnerability and brave resilience. Blunt is brilliant bravado masking profound suffering. Jeffs and Holly demonstrate a natural compassion and power throughout "Sunshine Cleaning". Rose is the dedicated single mom raising Oscar (natural Jason Spevack). Oscar is having problems in school, displaying anti-social behavior such as licking his teacher's leg. Oscar requires special schooling, something Rose can't afford with her current cleaning service job. This is a far cry from her glorious cheerleader days. Oh yes, she is having an affair with the former quarterback Mac (jerky good Steve Zahn), who has no intentions of leaving his wife. Rose's life is broken. At one point she breaks down telling Winston (Clifton Collins Jr.), "I was good at getting guys to want me…" But she can't get them to love her. Younger sister Norah is the smart ass brazen slacker, who can't hold a job. Norah lives with their Dad Joe (wonderful Alan Arkin). Widower Joe, instead of having a real job, always has some sort of business scheme brewing whether it is selling candy pop corn or moving shrimp in bulk. Arkin restrains Joe's idiosyncrasies enough to provoke our compassion. As it turns out his grandson Oscar is really bright, just a victim of the family weirdness, which is not fatal. Spevack has the right charm to carry this off. At the urging of Mac (Zahn) and using some of his police detective pull, Rose falls into the biohazard removal and crime scene cleaning niche business. Of course she enrolls Norah into the business as well, after all what else is Norah going to do. Rose forms a close bond with Cleaning Supply Owner Winston (compassionate Clifton Collins), but she is too blind to see that he is a decent man, unlike Mac. The captivating narrative thread involves Norah's obsession to watch their mother's TV movie appearance, where she plays a waitress. Both Rose and Norah deal with the tragedy of their mother differently. And it is not coincidence that their job deals with death and cleaning up all aspects of the aftermath, the physical and the human. It's hysterical as Norah falls into a bloodied mattress. It is touchingly solemn as Rose sits with the elder widow, whose husband killed himself. Jeffs reminds us of our humanity throughout. There is a mesmerizing scene as both Rose and Norah watch TV. "Sunshine Cleaning" is wonderfully quirky, at times morbid with a twisted sense of humor. "Sunshine Cleaning" also reminds us that sometimes the people we least expect will step up and be great. Adams and Blunt are awesome. Take a chance on "Sunshine Cleaning".

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