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Fried Green Tomatoes

Year: 1991
Director: Jon Avnet
Writer: Fannie Flagg
Cast: Kathy Bates, Jessica Tandy, Mary Stuart Masterson, Mary Louise Parker, Chris O'Donnell
Cute and sweet tale of down home, simple folks and how their story inspires a woman to break out of the self imposed constraints of her life.

Visiting her husband's mother in a nursing home, Evelyn (Bates) befriends a woman who lives there, Ninny (Tandy), who tells her the story of the people in the racist Alabama of the 1930s where she grew up, particularly the lifelong friendship between Idgie (Masterson) and Ruth (Parker).

Evelyn is something of a self-conscious loser, depressed at the state of her marriage, gorging on chocolate bars to feel better and - as she puts it in one of the movies' better lines 'too young to be old and too old to be young'.

But hearing about the adventures of a bunch of women who stuck their arms in up to the elbows, braved the elements, bad economy, bad men and racism (along with their many black friends), Evelyn becomes a late blossomer.

You really think Tandy's character telling the story turns out to have been Idgie all along - in fact, everything seems to be setting it up, and it feels all wrong that it isn't the case (although it's never stated otherwise, a possibly clever and subtle trick to leave us wondering).

The story within the story of Idgie, Ruth and co could have been made for a much younger audience with its simplistic themes but for the presence of the KKK and Ruth's sociopathic and violent husband, the story of Evelyn and her life a bit more adult, and the whole thing is a pleasantly paced package.

Those three-name actresses were huge in the day, they seem to have all fallen out of fashion now.

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