6.9/10
66,216
137 user 198 critic

Sunshine Cleaning (2008)

R | | Comedy, Drama | 17 April 2009 (USA)
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In order to raise the tuition to send her young son to private school, a mom starts an unusual business -- a biohazard removal/crime scene clean-up service -- with her unreliable sister.

Director:

Christine Jeffs

Writer:

Megan Holley
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Popularity
4,880 ( 193)
2 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Amy Adams ... Rose
Emily Blunt ... Norah
Alan Arkin ... Joe
Jason Spevack ... Oscar
Steve Zahn ... Mac
Mary Lynn Rajskub ... Lynn
Clifton Collins Jr. ... Winston
Eric Christian Olsen ... Randy
Paul Dooley ... Sherm
Kevin Chapman ... Carl
Judith Jones Judith Jones ... Paula Datzman-Mead
Amy Redford ... Heather
Christopher Dempsey ... Gun Shop Suicide
Vic Browder ... Gun Shop Owner
Ivan Brutsche Ivan Brutsche ... Above and Beyond Worker
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Storyline

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 <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

life's a messy business.

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, disturbing images, some sexuality and drug use | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

17 April 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Cong Ty Lau Chui See more »

Filming Locations:

Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$219,190, 15 March 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$12,062,558, 9 July 2009

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$16,174,377
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

A kiss scene was filmed between Norah (Emily Blunt) and Lynn (Mary Lynn Rajskub) but cut from the finished film. See more »

Goofs

When Norah and Lynn are at the party, Norah passes the joint to a guy next to Lynn. She does not get it back, but she can be seen smoking it in the following shots. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
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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Alternate Versions

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 »

Connections

Referenced in Moviemaking in Virginia: Take 3 (2008) See more »

Soundtracks

Spirit in the Sky
Written and Performed by Norman Greenbaum
Courtesy of Transtone Productions
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
"...From the Same People Who Brought You 'Little Miss Sunshine'…" Promo Didn't Set Well With Me!
2 August 2016 | by KissEnglishPastoSee all my reviews

........................................................from Pasto,Colombia...Via: L.A. CA., CALI, COLOMBIA and ORLANDO, FL

Cinema that provokes a strong reaction from me, for good or for bad, is easier to review. "Movies in the Middle", like "SUNSHINE", always present much more of a challenge. "From the same people who brought you 'Little Miss Sunshine'…" This phrase was used a lot in the SUNSHINE promos. Maybe it got in the way of me getting more out of the film. It didn't set very well with me that…

A) Both titles employ the word "SUNSHINE".

B) Alan Arkin basically does a warmed over version of his role in "Little Miss"

C) Both films are about dysfunctional families with a precocious child.

Taken as a whole, it just seemed too obvious that "The same people who brought you…" wanted desperately to cash in, AGAIN, and SUNSHINE(2?)is just a vehicle for doing so! Still, it does have ingratiating qualities. If you can tolerate the slow as molasses initial 30 minutes…(OK-Wait, make that as DELIBERATE as Molasses!), you'll probably feel it was worth your while, a pretty good little indie film, which could easily have been a lot better.

Catharsis, healing, coping, forgiveness and moving on, are some of the operative buzz-words for "Sunshine Cleaning". Perhaps just a tad too dreary for such a cheery title? "Sunshine" would have benefited from the injection of just a little more comic relief in the mix. The acting fell a little short of expectation. With Amy Adams (Junebug/Doubt) and Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada) perhaps my expectations were too high! Something was missing. The script was spotty and rather lackluster at times.

The on-screen chemistry was variable. Often, Alan Arkin's presence seemed to be a hindrance to the flow and balance of the scene and the story. SUNSHINE did have a very down-to-earth, realistic feel to it. The problems, reactions to them, and solutions encountered, or not, as the case may be, were believable and mundane; stuff that we all can relate too. Immediately after viewing, I had settled on a 6 Star rating, thinking "Sunshine" was going to be sans ricocheting...But, there has been a little of that going on in that 'Id' of mine, hours after viewing. So, we'll up it to

7 Stars!.....ENJOY/DISFRUTELA!

Any comments, questions or observations, in English o en Español, are most welcome!


6 of 9 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
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