Sunshine Hotel, the last stop before destitution. This Bowery flophouse is the setting for Michael Dominies exceptional, heart rending documentary. The film examines the lives of a number of men who, through bad luck, poor judgement, or addiction, have come to the end of the road.
Far from being a depressive chronicle of poverty, Dominic's film shows the uncanny survival skills and creativity of these lost souls. All are extremely articulate, and have an acute sense of what went wrong to bring them to the Sunshine Hotel, without wallowing in misery. Hotel manager Nathan, once a celebrated cabaret performer, narrates the documentary and also adds colourful passages from the 3,000 letters he has obsessively written to a TV news presenter. This collection of street philosophers, con- men, and hustlers, exhibit a rare honesty, unsure of their future, but literally surviving one day to the next.
Sometimes shocking, frequently humorous, Sunshine Hotel is an eye-opening cautionary tale Winner of the Best Documentary Award at the 2001 Durango Film Festival