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Sunshine Cleaning


Stars: Amy Adams, Emily Blunt, Alan Arkin, Steve Zahn

Director: Christine Jeffs

Single mom Rose (Adams), once a cheerleading college star but now just the mistress of a cop (Zahn), and her flaky sister Norah (Blunt), who's just been fired from her job, find a way to make the money they need when a friend mentions people who clean up crime scenes, anything from murder to suicide. That's apparently not all they're cleaning up.

After a shaky start by the girls, the cash starts rolling in and Rose enrols in a course to get the certificate she needs to legitimise the new business. Meanwhile, Rose's son Oscar (Jason Spevack) is in trouble at school; after Norah reads him forbidden bedtime stories about Lobsterman and a man obsessed with licking mailboxes, Oscar goes around licking things which include a teacher's leg.

Unfortunately, the film isn't as zany as that plot summary might incline you to think. In fact, despite a talented cast, it's rather dull, with Zahn especially wasted in the nothing role of Rose's married lover. Faint guitar music in the background pegs this as a well-meaning, low-budget indie.

David Quinlan

USA 2008. UK Distributor: Anchor Bay. Technicolor.
91 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 2.

Review date: 23 Jun 2009