Sunshine Cleaning

January 15, 2010 - Amy Adams and Emily Blunt play sisters who go into an unusual and, in their case, ironic line of business in this drama from 2008. Alan Arkin also stars as their dad. Steve Zahn and Mary Lynn Rajskub ("Chloe" from 24) have smaller roles.

Adams is Rose Lorkowski, a single mom who works for a cleaning service. Blunt is her younger sister, Norah, who can't manage to keep a job. Norah watches Rose's son, Oscar, while Rose carries on an affair with her high school sweetheart, Steve Zahn. He's now a police detective and a married man.

At his suggestion, Rose and Norah start a business cleaning up scenes where someone has died. At first, they don't know what they're doing. But, Winston, the owner of the local cleaning supply shop, takes pity on Rose and helps them out.

While Rose concentrates on building the business, Norah is obsessed with tracking down the daughter of a woman who drank herself to death. Norah finds her, but waits a while to tell her about her mother. That's just one of the ways that things get complicated in this neat little film from director Christine Jeffs.

Overall review: ** (and a half). The characters are interesting and the performances are good. The film is definitely worth a look. My major issue is that there seems to be a lot of unfinished business here. I would have liked some of the story lines to be tied up a little more tightly.