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Laramie Movie Scope:
Fried Green Tomatoes

Offbeat southern character study

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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February 11, 1992 -- ``Fried Green Tomatoes'' is an odd title for a film. It is based on the Fannie Flagg book of the same name and her screenplay (she appears in the film briefly in a woman's seminar).

The movie unfolds as a series of stories told by Jessica Tandy to Kathy Bates, these two Academy Award winners help move the story along. The best performances in the film, however, are turned in by Mary-Louise Parker (who also appears in Grand Canyon) and Mary Stewart Masterson. These two star in the flashback scenes of events 40 to 50 years ago. Stan Shaw (Big George) and Cicely Tyson (Sipsey) also provide good performances in supporting roles.

The story is a complicated interweaving of old and current events, women's liberation, racism, love, humor, triumph and tragedy. As Tandy tells her stories to Bates, Bates is able to take heart from them and get her own life under control and eventually she reaches out to help Tandy.

This film is at once wise, funny and very moving. The story is not as confusing as it sounds, but this is really more of a character study than a straight narrative. The performances are very good and the southern accents are wonderful. The film powerfully evokes a time and place and people that are foreign to me, yet somehow they seem familiar. As you can guess this is a difficult film to describe, but a pleasure to experience. It rates a B+.

Click here for links to places to buy this movie in video and/or DVD format, the soundtrack, books, even used videos, games and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]

(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)