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Little Miss Sunshine (2006)

R  |   |  Comedy, Drama  |  18 August 2006 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 335,320 users   Metascore: 80/100
Reviews: 881 user | 269 critic | 36 from Metacritic.com

A family determined to get their young daughter into the finals of a beauty pageant take a cross-country trip in their VW bus.


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Won 2 Oscars. Another 65 wins & 96 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Doctor #1
Convenience Store Proprietor
Teen Boy #1
Stan Grossman


In Albuquerque Sheryl Hoover brings her suicidal brother Frank to the breast of her dysfunctional and emotionally bankrupted family. Frank is homosexual, an expert in Proust. He tried to commit suicide when he was rejected by his boyfriend and his great competitor became renowned and recognized as number one in the field of Proust. Sheryl's husband Richard is unsuccessfully trying to sell his self-help and self-improvement technique using nine steps to reach success, but he is actually a complete loser. Her son Dwayne has taken a vow of silence as a follower of Nietzsche and aims to be a jet pilot. Dwayne's grandfather Edwin was sent away from the institution for elders (Sunset Manor) and is addicted in heroin. When her seven-year-old daughter Olive has a chance to dispute the Little Miss Sunshine pageant in Redondo Beach, California, the whole family travels together in their old Volkswagen Type 2 (Kombi) in a funny journey of hope of winning the talent contest and to make a dream ... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Welcome to Hell See more »


Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, some sex and drug content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

18 August 2006 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pequeña Miss Sunshine  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$370,782 (USA) (28 July 2006)


$59,889,948 (USA) (23 March 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The scenes that took place in Redondo Beach, California, were actually filmed in Ventura, California. None of the freeways near Redondo Beach lead to the beach. See more »


The papers in the hospital room: Richard puts them down on the counter. Clearly some are hanging over the side. In the next shot they are on the counter neatly. See more »


[first lines]
Richard: There are two kinds of people in this world, winners and losers.
See more »


Referenced in Hollywood's Top Ten: Movies to Warm Your Heart (2011) See more »


Information Highway
Written by Jon Ehrlich
Performed by Jon Ehrlich
Courtesy of Jeco Music
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Hilarious! I loved this fun, but slightly dark comedy
10 February 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

We were happy to have had the chance to see this at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival. I loved the cast: Greg Kinear, Toni Collette, Alan Arkin, Abigail Breslin, Paul Dano and Steve Carrell were ALL marvelous as the dysfunctional family. Little Miss Sunshine refers to a pageant to be held in California (the movie never states where the family lives, but most of the road scenes were definitely in the Phoenix, Arizona area. (added 8/2/06: I know now that the movie is set in New Mexico, for those of you who are interested in that sort of thing!)

The story follows little Olive, a normal child, who by a fluke wins her way into the finals of the Little Miss Sunshine pageant. The family decides they must accompany her in their old VW bus, so a road trip ensues.

The final third of the movie, which deals with the actual pageant, is by far the funniest part of the film. It illustrates, with great hilarity, the frightening people who are involved in child pageants. You can't help rooting for Olive, who is refreshingly normal amongst the frighteningly plastic other contestants.

(After discovering that I was in the (opposite of loved it) category on IMDb, I changed my subject line, because this was one of the best movies I've seen all year!! I LOVED IT)

This is NOT a movie for children. After reading through some other user comments, I have to say I'm dismayed by the amount of people complaining about the F word. This movie is rated R, mostly because of its frequent use of the F word, along with some drug use. If you do 5 minutes of research before you go to a movie, you should educate yourself as to WHY a movie is rated the way it is. If you are offended by swearing, then, if you go to a movie that is rated R because of language, be prepared to be offended! Okay, I'm off the soapbox. This is NOT a movie for children.

237 of 369 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Am I the only one who disliked this lethargic sad movie...???!! daduka83
amazing movie, but ArtAesthetics
Why did Dwayne have to go on the trip? JumeirahSun
Favorite characters? robeacero1
Were those REAL pageant girls? TheKonrad821
Why was Olive in a fat suit? UltimaGabe
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