Mr. Movie

'Sunshine Cleaning:' The ray of sunshine in this week's movies

Sunshine Cleaning is about people like you and me.

It’s a character study with flawed, and very human characters whose struggles mimic our own. Hope hangs on every great line of dialogue as the under-whelmed attempt to overcome the overwhelming.

Rose Lorkowski is not happy. She cleans houses and occasionally sleeps with her high school sweetheart, a cop who loves her but married her mortal enemy. He’s not going to leave his wife.

Her son is a challenge and needs to be in an expensive private school. That costs big bucks. Her dad is retired. Unsuccessful wheeling and dealing is his thing.

The boyfriend encourages her to get into the crime scene cleaning business. It’s big money. Partnering with her equally unhappy sister, Sunshine Cleaning is born and success the old-fashioned American way begins.

There are two reasons to see this movie. Amy Adams, Emily Blunt, Alan Arkin and excellent character actors Steve Zahn and Clifton Collins Jr. (see Mr. Movie’s interview with Collins) give multi-dimensions to first time writer Megan Holley’s characters.

Reason No. 2: Life — like their cleaning business — is not neat and tidy. Holley and director Christine Jeffs (Sylvia) take you on a couple of very interesting side trips and weave and leave lots of loose ends into the plot and then leave it alone.

That — in this case — is a good thing.

Mr. Movie rating: 4 1/2 stars

Rated R for mature themes, some sex and drug use. It opens Friday, April 17 at the Carmike 12.

5 stars to 4 1/2 stars: Must see on the big screen

4 stars to 3 1/2 stars: Good film, see it if it's your type of movie.

3 stars to 2 1/2 stars: Wait until it comes out on video.

2 stars to 1 star: Don't bother.

0 stars: Speaks for itself.