Wednesday, 7 September 2016

Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)


Comedy | Drama


Jon Avnet




Kathy Bates, Mary Stuart Masterson, Mary-Louise Parker, Jessica Tandy, Cicely Tyson, Chris O'Donnell, Stan Shaw, Gailard Sartain, Timothy Scott, Gary Basaraba, Lois Smith, Danny Nelson, Jo Harvey Allen, Macon McCalman, Richard Riehle, Raynor Scheine, Grace Zabriskie, Reid Binion, Nick Searcy, Constance Shulman


While visiting relatives in a nursing home, unhappy housewife Evelyn Couch (Kathy Bates) meets Ninny Threadgoode (Jessica Tandy), an old lady who soon enthralls her with the tales of people she used to know.


I must admit that the title didn't sound that appealing to me, but I've heard good things about it, so I thought it was worth a watch. And I'm so glad I did because "Fried Green Tomatoes" is a heartwarming, poignant and intense dramedy about the plight of women.

About the friendship between two young women in early 20th century American south, the story is strong and subtle, and will engage you from beginning to end. And the storytelling, through the eyes of an optimistic old lady, is just magical. Other than friendship, this part of the film is also about love, and both deals with being a woman in a man-dominated world and addresses racial issues.

This very compelling, and intelligent story from the past is supported by the modern-day story of a housewife unsatisfied with her life and that feels trapped in her marriage. And just like above, this part also takes a look at women's roles in society.

In addition to that, there are some strong, interesting, intense and well developed characters that make the whole thing feel real.

Thanks to the brilliant job of director Jon Avnet, the film finds the perfect balance between past and present, comedy/funny scenes and drama/sad and emotional scenes. And it also features great editing, beautiful cinematography and spot-on score.

At last but not least, the performances from a mostly female cast. Kathy Bates gives such a sensitive and brilliant performances as present-day housewife that is breathtaking. Jessica Tandy is superb as the old lady telling the story, and rightly received an Oscar nomination. Mary Stuart Masterson and Mary-Louise Parker both do an outstanding job as Idgie and Ruth, the two friends the film is about. And the rest of the cast does a good job as well - Cicely Tyson deserves to be mentioned because she is simply amazing.

You can call it a "chick flick" if you want, but I call it "one of those movies that are so good they make me want to read the novel".

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