Saturday, March 17, 2018

Fried Green Tomatoes starring Kathy Bates, Mary Stuart Masterson, Mary Louise Parker & Jessica Tandy: #SaturdayMatinee


It had been ages since I watched Fried Green Tomatoes. Even after watching the trailer, I’m so old I couldn’t remember the half of it! That’s why I had to watch it again.



(Pssst. I’m not that old but I am turning 65 this year! Old enough for Medicare for heaven’s sake, I’m feelin’ it, you know?)



The movie, based on the book by Fannie Flagg, came out in January of 1992. My father was dying in a hospital in Sherman Oaks from liver disease that month so I wasn’t spending much time going to the movies; in a surprising bit of synchronicity, Carol Sobieski who co-wrote the Academy Award nominated screenplay with Flagg, died from liver cancer just before the film came out.



Beautiful, British born Jessica Tandy was nominated for best supporting actress. She was a ripe old eighty at the time with a half century of film work behind her including her Oscar winning turn in Driving Miss Daisy and Cocoon, with Nobody’s Fool still to come. She lost out to Mercedes Ruehl in The Fisher King. I’m sure she didn’t give a fig. 



 “Face it girls, I’m older and I have more insurance.’’

Of course the movie also belongs to marvelous Kathy Bates and who doesn’t remember that classic scene where she gets the last word on those younger women in the parking lot. 



But the beautiful relationship between Mary-Louise Parker and Mary Stuart Masterson—were they friends or lovers?—is central to the plot. The way I see it, not unlike Armie Archer’s character in Call Me By Your Name, Mary Stuart Masterson’s character (Idgie), such a strong, independent free spirit, is one that whether man or woman, you couldn’t help falling in love with. You either wanted to be Idgie, or you fell in love with her. That’s about it. I don’t see how you could dislike her or maintain your neutrality. 


And Ruth, like the rest of us,  certainly fell for her. Fried Green Tomatoes, this week’s Saturday Matinee, also stars Cicely Tyson and Chris O’Donnell in a heartbreaking and short appearance. 



That bee scene in Fried Green Tomatoes still freaks me out. How’d they do that?

The film is available to watch free OnDemand for HBO subscribers, and to stream on Amazon, Vudu, iTunes, YouTube and GooglePlay for about three bucks. Check your Netflix account, like a lot of great films, it comes and goes. 




Watch the Fried Green Tomatoes trailer 



And because it is my birthday in a couple of months, a look at the 'best birthday ever' scene from the film.


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