A Bit of a Mess

20 Mar

Sometimes a movie is pleasant and all, but it just feels pointless. So it is with Sunshine Cleaning. The story of Rose Lorkowski (Amy Adams), a young woman who starts her own crime-scene cleanup business with the help of her slacker sister, Norah (Emily Blunt), Cleaning was one of the finds at the Sundance Film Festival more than a year ago. The film was produced by the same folks who produced Little Miss Sunshine, and like that film, Cleaning also stars Alan Arkin as a cantankerous old man who has a good relationship with his grandchild. But a similar name and costar are really all these two movies have in common, and that’s probably why it took so long for the film to actually hit theaters. Cleaning has very little of the charm and emotion that Little Miss had, despite having Amy Adams in the lead. There’s a pretty creepy subplot involving Norah and the daughter of a deceased woman, and Rose just, well, I never really felt like I wanted to root for her. The movie’s not a total mess or anything, but it’s definitely not as quirky as it thinks it is. I expect the fate of Sunshine Cleaning will be much like the scenes Rose and Norah clean up, with nary a trace of it left in just a couple hours. I’m giving the movie a C+.

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