Lance Daly's pleasant comedy-drama Life's a Breeze centres on a squabbling family on the hunt for their mother's lost fortune.

It is carried by two powerful performances from acting legend Fionnula Flanagan and outstanding newcomer Kelly Thornton, who makes her debut after being spotted on the street by the film's casting director.

She plays 13-year-old schoolgirl Emma, who is bribed by her layabout uncle Colm (Pat Shortt) to take her Nan (Flanagan) out for the day so he and his siblings can give her cluttered Georgian home a much-needed overhaul.

You can't help but think that their intentions are slightly less than altruistic, and are probably based on a long-term goal to sell the property and divide the earnings - something Nan is aware of.

Predictably, their interference is unwelcome, and they are taken aback when Nan calmly informs them that her mattress contained her life savings of close to a million euro. Their initial scepticism turns quickly to panic as they brainstorm ways to track down the lost fortune.

Visits to recycling centres and landfills only serve to confirm the 'needle in a haystack' situation, while Colm makes matters worse by announcing on a radio show that the cash has gone missing.

An army of money-hungry opportunists are soon knee-high in waste, hoping to come across Nan's nest egg and leaving the family's chances close to zero.

This is an enjoyable, well-told story that shines a light on the relationships family members have with one another, particularly regarding finances and inheritance. Thornton puts in a subtle and considered performance as a schoolgirl who is wise beyond her years, and the scenes she shares with Flanagan are a delight to behold.

Sarah McIntyre