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阳光清洗 Sunshine Cleaning 英语影评

栏目:英文影评 来源:影评网 作者:www.yingping8.cn

阳光清洗 Sunshine Cleaning 英语影评

At the end of "Sunshine Cleaning," a foxy grandpa shrugs off the extravagance of an advertising claim he has made by saying: "It's a business lie -- it's not the same as a life lie." Be that as it may, there are no life lies in this lovely, sweet-spirited film, which was directed by Christine Jeffs from a strong debut screenplay by Megan Holley. Though the script has its share of contrivances -- maybe more than its share -- the director and her co-stars, Amy Adams and Emily Blunt, bring a steadfast sense of truth to the story of two sisters trying to jump-start their stuck lives and grow up.

They're just wonderful, these two actresses, and quietly spectacular in different ways. Anyone who's seen Amy Adams in such recent films as "Enchanted" or "Doubt" knows she can switch from sweet to witty to radiant to poignant in the blink of a moist eye. Here she is all of those things, sometimes simultaneously. She plays Rose Lorkowski,(英语影评 www.yingping8.com) a single mother in Albuquerque who cleans houses for a marginal living, recites hopeful affirmations to herself, dreams of getting a real-estate license and imagines that her lover will leave his wife. Rose has been hobbled all her life by her need to please, but she's got a brave streak that sustains her when she plunges into the bizarre career of biohazard removal and crime-scene cleanup.

Emily Blunt has been best known until now for her performance as Meryl Streep's fevered first assistant in "The Devil Wears Prada"; though it was a small part, almost overshadowed by Anne Hathaway's star turn, she made it memorably funny. Far from being overshadowed in "Sunshine Cleaning," she's a comic whirlwind with a still, grave center. She is Norah, the younger sister who lives with their father -- he's played by Alan Arkin -- and who joins Rose, reluctantly, in her new business venture. Prickly and wry, tough and vulnerable, Norah is a displeaser. She displeases herself, first and foremost, by sabotaging her life at every turn. Where Rose has learned to cover her sadness with brittle good cheer, Norah, lacking any gift for camouflage -- or inclination toward happiness -- wears her grief on her sleeve, and in the dark beauty of her eyes.

"Sunshine Cleaning" was produced by the same group that gave us "Little Miss Sunshine," so comparisons are inevitable. "Little Miss Sunshine" had the broader canvas of a road trip and a stronger narrative engine, not to mention a VW bus that functioned as a comic character. It had an irresistible 7-year-old heroine, although Rose's 8-year-old son, Oscar (Jason Spevack), is an endearing kid, too, and if there's any way of resisting Rose and Norah I never found it. "Little Miss Sunshine" got there first with Alan Arkin's lovably irascible grandfather; it wasn't such a great idea to have him play a similar part again, except that he does it so damned well. And the earlier film's contrivances, however numerous, seemed more organic than those in the new one -- most flagrantly a melodramatic scene involving Norah and a railroad trestle, and an underlying emotional structure that springs, somewhat schematically, from events in the sisters' childhood.

Yet that structure yields stirring results -- a lacerating argument following an accident, a heart-stopping reconciliation in a ladies' room. (Christine Jeffs, a New Zealander with an unerring instinct for the nuances of American life, elicits extraordinary performances from the whole cast, which includes Steve Zahn, Mary Lynn Rajskub and Clifton Collins Jr.) And the one element of "Sunshine Cleaning" that would seem to be pure contrivance -- the central premise of cleaning up after murders and suicides -- is developed with a solemn (though often comic) respect for its deepest resonances. "We come into people's lives when they've experienced something profound and sad," Rose tells a group of chattering women who can't begin to comprehend what a dear soul she is. "They've lost somebody, and we help. In some small way we help."

In another scene that should seem like naked artifice but feels more like a tender homage to "Our Town," Rose speaks her heart to her dead mother via the long-dead CB radio in her ancient van. "You've missed out," she says. "You've missed out on some really great stuff." You'll miss out on some really great stuff if you don't see this surprising movie.

'Race to Witch Mountain'
When well-loved entertainments like Disney's 1975 "Escape to Witch Mountain" are remade, the perpetrators often call their new versions re-imaginings. "Race to Witch Mountain" might better be called a de-imagining. It's an update of a period piece that needed refreshing -- by no stretch of anyone's imagination was the original a masterpiece -- but the updates are like those you install to keep your computer's operating system current. Everything's a familiar plug-in from contemporary pop culture, every new development is brisk, bloodless and banal.

In the original, two mysterious children with special powers gradually came to understand, along with the audience, that they were visitors from another planet. In the new one, gradualism has been replaced by the all-too-modern freneticism of pounding chases and overblown special effects. The kids, played by AnnaSophia Robb and Alexander Ludwig, are clearly aliens from the start; the only question is how long it will take them to escape their unfathomably dunderheaded government pursuers led by a scowling Ciarán Hinds. (As you may recall from ancient times, the original bad guys were Aristotle Bolt, a misanthropic millionaire played broadly but effectively by Ray Milland, and his lackey Deranian, played quite creepily by Donald Pleasence.)

Instead of Eddie Albert as the amiable rustic who befriends the endangered kids, we now have Dwayne Johnson as a Las Vegas cabbie with a checkered past. Mr. Johnson is always an appealing presence as well as an imposing one, and he's got a gift for comedy that's been waiting to be sharpened and refined. It's still waiting. So is his considerable magnetism, since there's not a molecule of chemistry between him and a scientist played by Carla Gugino. This is filmmaking by the numbers meant to succeed by the numbers.

 


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