SUNSHINE STATE

John Sayles, Writer/Director

This movie is a lot of fun, says something about its characters and comments upon burying the past and implementing the new in the United States.

Eminent Domain in Florida plagues the lives of poor white and black residents of a neglected community, now coming into view of developers. They want to build another exclusive, beachfront, senseless community for snowbirds.

The developers are like a presidential candidate, coarse, crude, vulgar, boasting, petty, ignorant, money-driven and vile with opponents who are enemies. Political incorrectness, obnoxiousness and being rude and offensive are common. There is a full-blooded Creek Native American, who is “sh-t creek.” The developers are bought partially the City, County and regulatory bodies to get approval for all development. One means to get all the property is develop partially and drive up property taxes so the poorer residents cannot afford them.

“Bucaneer Days,” a local festival once again fails to become a community tradition to attract tourists. Angela Bassett and her husband, James McDaniel, visit her mother, Mary Alice, after decades of separation. That story plays out and dovetails into the grab for real estate riches. Edie Falco operates an older motel/restaurant and looks after her parents, Jane Alexander and Ralph Waite. They represent the change that the world is bringing to the community without the developers.

In the end development is stopped. A Native-American burial site (arrowheads) is discovered.

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