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Sunlight Jr.

Producers Charlie Corwin, Ariel Elia, Andrea Roa


Melissa Winters works as a cashier in a convenience store. It’s a dead end job, one dollar above minimum wage, but it’s as good as she can get. Her boyfriend, Richie Barnes (Matt Dillon) is permanently disabled from a motorcycle accident he had years ago. A former television repair man, Richie now lives month to month on a government disability check. He would love to get a real job, but instead, he drinks. Sunlight Jr. is a social issue film disguised as a love story. Melissa and Richie live together in a motel in Florida. Despite the circumstances of their difficult lives, they have formed a relationship anchored by trust, mutual respect, and tenderness. The news of Melissa’s pregnancy fills them both with joy. But as the film progresses and we enter their day-to-day struggles, we watch reality slowly crumble their dreams. Melissa loses her job. They’re displaced from the motel. They move in with Melissa’s mother who raises foster children to support herself. Going home again — as Mel has done so many times — is not the same with a life growing in her belly. She sees so clearly what she must do, but will her relationship survive?

Sunlight Jr. is a Cinereach grantee.