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?Written by
This is the second of two movies Alan Arkin starred in with the word "Sunshine" in the title. The first was "Little Miss Sunshine (2006)". See more »
When Norah chases after the kitten, there is a small table and a cat statue on the porch. Later, when the house is burning at night, the table and statue are gone. A subsequent scene of the porch in flames has the table and cat statue back again. See more »
Talking Deer Head:
Attention all fellow deer. If you find deer feed in the middle of the forest, be a bit suspicious.
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Amy Adams brief topless scene has been censored in the US home video releases. Those frames are zoomed in slightly to omit the nudity where as the framing is left intact on releases outside of the US. See more »
Illuminating as sunshine, this film is a sharp, sweet look at the working class
Rose Lorkowski (Amy Adams) was once a popular cheerleader and a person of envy, back in those high school years. However, she has made some questionable choices since then and now works as a home cleaner to support herself and her young son, Oscar. She does a have a back-up system in her wheeler-dealer father, Joe (Alan Arkin) and in her frequently out-of-work younger sister, Norah (Emily Blunt), if she needs babysitters. She calls upon the eccentric Norah often, especially so that she, Rose, can have a late-night tryst with a married policeman, Mac (Steve Zahn). Ouch, she is still going in the wrong direction, it seems. However, Mac does give her a work tip. If she could get into the "crime scene" cleaning business, she would be pulling in large bucks, as removing blood stains is big stuff. Receiving some leads, Rose does begin to get some assignments, like cleaning up after suicide victims and folks that die in their slovenly homes. Reluctantly, Norah agrees to help and "Sunshine Cleaners" is born. But, with Oscar still having trouble in school and with Mac continuing to string her along in the love department, will Rose really rise above her present circumstances? This is a fine film about people who work hard and get nowhere. First, the cast is great, with Adams, Blunt and Arkin delivering terrific performances, ones worthy of honors. Blunt, especially, is a treasure as the unconventional woman, haunted by past circumstances, and having trouble fitting into "modern" existence. The lesser actors are also nice, but Zahn is, unfortunately, given no chances to show off his comedic touch. The setting in New Mexico is also lovely, while the costumes and look of the film are likewise wonderful. That said, special mention should also go to the very fine, sharply worded script and the secure direction. This is a heart-grabbing story, with unusual elements and unsettling realities. If you love films that are not of the typical, churn-em-out variety, this one is definitely a worthy choice. It is as illuminating as sunshine and as touching as they come.
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