Sunshine Cleaning a Delightful Mess

Poignant comedy manages to scrub past the indie film clichés
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 13, 2009 11:00 AM CDT

(Newser) – Humor and poignancy don't merge that neatly in Sunshine Cleaning, but its offbeat charm managed to win over most critics. The story of sisters from a troubled family who go into the crime-scene cleanup business delves deep into emotional issues but remains a comedy, Kirk Honeycutt writes in the Hollywood Reporter, although "more a gray than a black one."

The producers of Little Miss Sunshine have recycled many of the same quirky ingredients into a "sweet and appealing, if familiar, concoction," writes Claudia Puig in USA Today. Cleaning was a hit at the Sundance festival, but the indie feel was a little too generic for Stephanie Zacharek of Salon, who finds her tolerance for "slender, semi-hip comedic dramas about oddball families grappling with sometimes overwhelming problems" is wearing thin.