Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr Viber
Empire
Trending On Empire
The Big 2015 Movie Preview
The 50 Best Films Of 2014
Review Of The Year 2014
100 Greatest Characters
Your all-time favourite heroes and villains
Subscribe To Empire
Sign up now and save 44%
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
15
Cast
Edie Falco
Angela Bassett
Timothy Hutton.
Directors
John Sayles.
Screenwriters
John Sayles.
Running Time
141 minutes

LATEST FILM REVIEWS
Vacation
2 Star Empire Rating
Strange Magic
2 Star Empire Rating
Looking For Love
3 Star Empire Rating
Pressure
3 Star Empire Rating
Misery Loves Comedy
3 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Man With A Movie Camera
5 Star Empire Rating
Salt Of The Earth, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Song Of The Sea
5 Star Empire Rating
Look Of Silence, The
5 Star Empire Rating
Mad Max: Fury Road
5 Star Empire Rating

Sunshine State
Affecting portrait of a Florida coastal town with a whip-smart script and marvellous performances.


submit to reddit


Plot
As Delrona Beach celebrates 'Buccaneer Days', rival property developers arouse mixed emotions among townsfolk. Marly longs to sell her family's motel, while Desiree, back after 25 years, resists being drawn into the community's fight to preserve its ideals.


Review
Indie emeritus John Sayles crosses the continent from his Alaskan-set Limbo for a more emotionally accessible comedy-drama on a Florida seaside, well off the Miami-Disney World itinerary.

From a teenage arsonist to a failed actress and a suicidal embezzler, the characters wrestle with their problems while battles ensue between property developers around a proposed resort. The most engaging element is the tentative romance between Falco's weary ex-mermaid and landscape architect Hutton, while most poignant is venerable Bill Cobbs, championing a once prosperous black community.

In an excellent ensemble (which includes Sayles regular Tom Wright as the local has-been hero and NYPD Blue duo James McDaniel and Gordon Clapp) Steenburgen is a scream as the harassed organiser trying to drum up tourism with tacky pirate shows and a man-eating alligator. The Sopranos' Falco is also terrific.


Verdict
It’s not as focused as Sayles’ earlier wide-ranging dramas, and could use more Altmanesque coincidence and connections to pull it together. But the performances are strong, with the characters benefiting from Sayles’ customary wit and understanding.


Reviewed by Angie Errigo

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
Black Mass Trailer Breakdown With Director Scott Cooper
Find out what's what with Johnny Depp's take on Boston Gangster Whitey Bulger

The N.W.A-Team
Empire visits the set of Straight Outta Compton

Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation
Read Empire's official verdict

Empire Meets Joely Richardson
On Maggie, Arnie and Event Horizon

100 Greatest Movie Characters
The complete list of your all-time favourite heroes and villains

Vote Now For Your Favourite TV Shows
Pick your top five - if you can...

Paul Rudd Is Awesome
Being awesome: from Clueless to Ant-Man

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Empire print magazine

Delivered to your door – with exclusive subscriber only covers each month!

Subscribe now!

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Empire digital magazine

Exclusive and enhanced content – get instant access via your iPad or Android device

Subscribe now!

Subscribe now and save up to 67%
Print, Digital & Package options available Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire Digital Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  Digital Edition  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)