A Shine of Rainbows

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Reviews Counted: 9

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User Ratings: 661


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Reviews Count: 0
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Average Rating: 3.7/5

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Movie Info

A young boy struggles to find love and acceptance with his new family in this drama from director Vic Sarin. Tomas (John Bell) is an eight-year-old orphan living in a home for children without parents on an island off the Irish coastline. Tomas has become a target for bullies and knows little peace at the orphanage, so he's overjoyed when he's adopted by Maire O'Donnell (Connie Nielsen), a lovely and caring woman who takes the boy under her wing. However, while Maire shows Tomas plenty of kindness, the same cannot be said for her husband, Alec (Aidan Quinn), who doesn't hide his disappointment with his frail new son. As Tomas tries to understand Alec and live up to his expectations, he finds a baby seal on the beach, and begins caring for the abandoned animal, showing it the compassion he's longed for in his own life. A Shine of Rainbows was an official selection at the 2009 Toronto International Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

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Critic Reviews for A Shine of Rainbows

All Critics (9) | Top Critics (2)

  • Hey, what's not to like about cute orphans, baby seals, sweet moms and gruff dads with hearts of gold? And rainbows? If your heart is going thumpety-thump at such a prospect, here is the movie for you.

    Apr 22, 2010 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…
  • A family film that risks drowning in its own syrup.

    Apr 9, 2010 | Rating: 2/4
  • The story is sweet and tender, and it's modestly self-contained. Sure, it deals with some heavy topics and subjects, but it doesn't beat the viewer over the head with it.

    Oct 14, 2013 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…
  • A fine family film about an orphan who finds a satisfying new life in the countryside of Ireland.

    May 23, 2011 | Rating: 3/5 | Full Review…
  • Gawd, this movie is so nauseatingly nice.

    Oct 5, 2010 | Rating: 0.5/4 | Full Review…
  • A nice, wholesome movie with a positive story about learning to be loved and to love others. Unfortunately, it's also too dull and treacly for most tastes.

    May 7, 2010 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for A Shine of Rainbows


Beautiful. Magical. Scenic. Heartwarming. Charming. Tearjerker. All my favorite qualities wrapped up in one nice little Irish film. I am a sucker for movies that revolve around children, and this one was no exception..Loved it!!

Cynthia S.
Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer

The first time I saw newcomer John Bell as Tomas in A Shine of Rainbows, i saw an orphan filled with desire to be loved. When I saw Aidan Quinn, playing the boy's adoptive father, I saw resentment. And when I saw Connie Nielsen, as the boy's adoptive mother, I saw someone filled with magic.The kind of magic that could change someone's life, by just allowing them to be themselves.It took place on Corrie Island, close to the coast of Ireland, and it brought so much color to the movie, with breath taking landscapes. Some might consider the story to be too much sentimental, but it was not. It was too sincere and real for that. The beautiful scenery, and wonderful performances, put me under a spell. I cared for these characters. It was amazing how something that might not seem like much on the outside, could end up being so powerful and moving.It was a feel good movie despite of the tragedy Tomas experienced at such a young age. The message brought here was how love given to a complete stranger could transform people in such a positive way.

Daisy  Maduro
Daisy Maduro

Super Reviewer

A magically heartwarming film about people adjusting to the trails and tribulations of life while finding strength, love, and happiness.

Movee Critic
Movee Critic

Super Reviewer

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