Cleaning biohazard preconceptions

Amanda Marie Alvarado

‘Sunshine Cleaning’ is a movie for losers. It speaks to the loser inside of us as we attempt to live in this world’s paradigm with the constant feeling that all we amount to is our financial deficit. In our current society ‘- as people lose their jobs, homes and selves ‘- this indie film shows us the possibility of happiness without the Hollywood ending.

Amy Adams stars as Rose, an ex-high school cheerleader and single mom barely supporting her son (Jason Spevack). She pretends to take realty classes while carrying on an affair with an old, married high school flame (Steve Zahn). Her careers as a cleaning lady provides a type of predictability derived in mathematical equations. Unless something changes she will unhappily struggle to stay afloat the rest of her life.

Thus, Rose decides to take a risk – she starts her own biohazard, crime-scene cleaning business. Along with her sister, Norah (Emily Blunt) and a little help from a U.S. veteran, cleaning supplies salesman (Clifton Collins Jr), Rose learns that sanitizing death makes a killing. Never fear, no real bodies or gore are actually shown. Luckily, Megan Holly’s script avoids much of the predictable bathroom/toxic waste humor potential for this film (except for Norah falling face first on a bloody mattress.) Director, Christine Jeff focuses more on character growth and the stability of solid relationships.

Rose proves the perfect spokes person for all losers. Her constant mirror pep-talks and her fear of making the hard decisions is highly identifiable. She lives in the past where cheering masks all problems. Ultimately Rose discovers that facing her dilemmas before they turn into crisis marks the role of the adult.

Moreover, ‘Sunshine Cleaning’ makes you believe in the power of the individual. One’s significance is not a product of a job, wealth or investment, but of our decisions. Thus, in a time when our careers do not define us, the film tells us to throw away the paradigm. Our lives may not be a prototype for ‘Homes ‘amp; Gardens,’ but good aspects still exist in this rough little picture labeled reality. So look into the mirror, where you left that terribly flawed person, and risk being yourself.