It is the summer of 1972 and the Phelon family are settling into their isolated cottage for another perfect seaside holiday. Days of swimming and fishing, sultry nights of food, wine and good company. This summer, 13-year-old Janey is awakening to the newly found power of her sexuality, and the possibilities and choices of adulthood. Not yet an adult, but no longer a child, Janey is increasingly aware of the cracks in her parents’ marriage. She is critical of the behaviour of her mother Kate. Meanwhile, Kate feels life is passing her by. She is dissatisfied with her marriage to Ed and increasingly unsettled by her daughter’s willfulness, her untouched beauty and growing sense of allure. When itinerant photographer Cady joins the sleepy holiday community, he brings an air of change with him ; of new possibilities, and uncharted waters. Kate is drawn to the freedom he represents, and Janey follows his every move. Ed and Jim are left behind, as daughter and mother follow their own paths… “I loved the sense of atmosphere and foreboding in the novel and also the reflection on childhood… The sense of transience in that relationships come and go and that the moment is precious.” –Quinzaine des Réalisateurs
Christine Jeffs (born 1963) is a New Zealand-born film director known for directing the British motion picture Sylvia, starring Gwyneth Paltrow and Daniel Craig, and the American independent film Sunshine Cleaning (2009), with Amy Adams and Emily Blunt.
Jeffs is the director and screenwriter of the New Zealand film Rain (2001).
Jeffs lives in Auckland with her partner John Toon, cinematographer of Sunshine Cleaning and her other films. —Wikipedia
I read the novel by Kirsty Gunn and was really taken by it; she wrote with a beautiful style, almost poetry in prose. The film, though good, wasn't able to capture that beauty, as is usually the case. I would recommend seeing the film, then track down the book. Actually, track down the book, then see the film.