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Swk 275 - Little Miss Sunshine

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April Parkerson

SWK 275

Little Miss Sunshine

When I first heard about this movie, I was sure that I never wanted to watch it. I had seen only bits and pieces, before learning that we would be watching it as a class assignment. Come to find out I really enjoyed it because of all the sacrifices the family made to make sure that Olive gets to live her dream. The family included a motivational speaking dad, an exasperated mom, a suicidal uncle, a silently seething brother, and a junkie grandfather. They were able to accomplish what many families in this day and age could never be able to. The family is able to discover over the weekend what family really is about by facing several personal and physical dilemmas.

1. Discuss how this family is considered both a blended and multi-generation family.

A blended family is a family composed of a couple and their children from previous marriages. The family is blended because of the Mom being on her second marriage and having her son Dwayne from her first marriage. Both are Olive's parents. The movie includes three generations of the family. It starts off with Olive and Dwayne, then moves onto the Mom and her brother Frank, and ends with Grandpa. A blended family is very common in the United States and the problems that this family faces during this film are very similar to everyday life for some.

2. What type of parenting style do Olive's parents employ?

I feel that the parenting style used was permissive. The parents were warm to the idea of the beauty pageant, responsive to figuring out how to get there, and undemanding of the children's responsibilities in getting there. They didn't place requirements on the children like chores around the house and cleaning up. They never bullied the two kids, but the son wasn't very mature or responsible. In cases of children living with permissive parents, children are often less mature, more irresponsible, and less able to assume leadership positions. Dwayne showed just about all of these characteristics when he started off by not talking anymore and then blowing up and cussing the whole family out.

3. Discuss the strengths and weakness of Olive and Grandpa's relationship.

The relationship with Olive and Grandpa is very loving but has a few flaws to it. The movie starts off showing the he has a huge drug addiction, with that being the reason he was kicked out of the nursing home. He views life with regret and using his time now to justify it. Olive spends the most time with her grandfather during the entire movie, until he passes away. She even stays in the same hotel room with him, which in many cases is viewed as inappropriate because of his drug use. He is helping her with her talent competition, which is performed as a part of the pageant. Grandpa's behavior completely does a 180 twist when Olive isn't around. He is rude and destructive, which can be a side effect from the drugs. His drug



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