Real estate developers descend upon a sleepy coastal Florida community with the promise of big money and bigger changes. Torn between honoring family obligations and the lure of quick cash, the locals greet the outsiders with a wildly mixed reception. Marly Temple is eager to give in and sell the family business to start over her life. As caretaker of her father’s motel and cafe, she has grown resentful of missed opportunities. However, she finds a glimmer of hope in a tentative romance with a visiting landscape architect. Desiree Perry left town many years ago to escape a scandal and make a name for herself as an actress. Reluctantly returning home, she finds her strong willed mother unwilling to let go of the past.
Susan C. Mitchell <[email protected]>
User Reviews: With SUNSHINE STATE, John Sayles has created a completely self indulgent film – writing, directing AND editing the project and (apparently) without the sense to know when enough is enough. It takes real genious to know when to get off. This film has too much of everything – too many characters, too many scenes, too many stories, too many characters – all leaving us with too much unsaid, too much unexplored, and scenes that go on way too long. Mary Alice smiles as if she knows the secret to the universe (but won’t tell us); Tim Hutton proves he should have done more films when he was younger (and cuter); Edie Falco stares numbly into space wondering why she isn’t back in New Jersey making lasagna; Mary Steenburgen reprises her faded "southern belle" from MISS FIRECRACKER; Ralph Waite bellows like a beached King Lear; Charlayne Woodard is wasted in a tiny cameo. Only Angela Bassett and Bill Cobbs make any sense of their roles. John Sayles – know thy limits.