Welcome to Hell

Little Miss Sunshine

Lean and I saw Little Miss Sunshine on Saturday. I’ve been so excited for it and it more than met my expectations. It was SO sweet and terribly funny. At the heart of the story is seven-year-old Olive, who is very unique and thoughtful. While visiting her aunt, she won a beauty pageant, which led to a spot in an upcoming pageant in California. She’s played by Abigail Breslin. (You may remember her from Signs, in which she wore a fancy foil hat.) She is a very talented actress. She brought such genuine, tender emotion to the movie.

Olive’s family includes a bitter father, who’s hard on everyone and himself, a sweet-but-frazzled mother, a brother who took a vow of silence and hasn’t spoken in nine months, a heroine-sniffing grandfather who got kicked out of his nursing home, and a brilliant, nutty uncle who’s recently made a suicide attempt. Because money is tight, the whole family travels to the pageant in a broken-down Volkswagen van. You can imagine the hilarity that ensues, and yet nothing about the film is predictable. It’s an honest portrait of families, complete with crazy dynamics, clashing personalities, endless frustrations, and (hopefully) love at the root of it all. Some of the scenes were so moving, I had tears in my eyes several times during the movie. Paul Dano, who played Olive’s brother Dwayne, did an especially fantastic job I thought. He really captured the angst of a bright-but-confused-and-overwhelmed teenager.

Lean and I planned to attend the 7:15 p.m. showing but it was sold out. We got tickets for the 8 p.m. show and it ended up selling out as well. We had to sit in the front row! I was surprised so many people came, although I know the movie’s gotten great reviews. We ended up chatting with the cutest couple to our left. They’re indie film buffs too so we exchanged notes on our favorites and upcoming goodies. In the short time before the movie started, I managed to develop a major crush on the guy half of this cute couple. He was relaxed, laid back, smart, and admitted he likes talky chick flicks! *drool*

To our right were two older men, one of whom talked using his outside voice for most of the movie. He pretty much stuck to verbal diarrhea comments on the scenes and characters, but threw in a joke or two to keep things exciting. During a movie, I may make occasional comments to whomever I’m seeing the movie with, but I always make a point to be discreet and whisper. This fellow didn’t afford us that courtesy. Fortunately overall, it was more funny than irritating.

P.S. ‘Welcome to Hell’ is a line from the movie, which I thought I’d share in case you don’t plan to see it, which you TOTALLY should and I better not hear otherwise!

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