An elderly Jewish widow living in Atlanta can no longer drive. Her son insists she allow him to hire a driver, which in the 1950s meant a black man. She resists any change in her life but, Hoke, the driver is hired by her son. She refuses to allow him to drive her anywhere at first, but Hoke slowly wins her over with his native good graces. The movie is directly taken from a stage play and does show it. It covers over twenty years of the pair's life together as they slowly build a relationship that transcends their differences. Written by
John Vogel <email@example.com>
"Driving Miss Daisy" is one of the nicest movies ever made. Winner of 4 Academy Awards including Best Picture of 1989, "Driving Miss Daisy" is about a black man who goes to work as a chauffeur for a stubborn old Jewish woman. Morgan Freeman and the late Jessica Tandy give brilliant performances in the lead roles, and they've never been better. I sure do miss seeing the presence of Tandy in the movies. She was good in just about everything she did in both feature and TV movies (her heart in acting always belonged to the stage). She very deservedly won the Best Actress Oscar for her role as Miss Daisy, a person who at first is not happy about this man coming into her life but learns to accept it and forms a real special friendship. Freeman is every bit her match here as Hoke, the chauffeur. The exchanges between the two in the beginning are very funny and very touching at the end. Dan Aykroyd takes on a rare serious role in "Driving Miss Daisy" as Tandy's son Boolie, a businessman who hires Hoke to be Miss Daisy's driver. And the late Esther Rolle (of TV's "Good Times" and "Maude") has a nice small part as Miss Daisy's maid. When this movie came out in late 1989 it was guaranteed many Oscar nominations. Then the nominations came out in February 1990 and "Driving Miss Daisy" got the most with 9 nominations. But one nomination was missing: Best Director. And what a gyp that was! Bruce Beresford did a terrific job of directing "Driving Miss Daisy" and to this day I will never understand why the Academy didn't nominate him. The Academy voters for the Best Director category got stupid that year and Beresford was omitted unfairly. This is a terrific movie and the director should have been nominated. Richard Zanuck, one of the producers of "Driving Miss Daisy", said something in March 1990 when accepting the Best Picture Oscar for this movie along with the other producer and real-life wife Lili Fini Zanuck that I completely agree with. He said quote: "Were up here for one very simple reason and that's the fact that Bruce Beresford is a brilliant director. It's as simple as that!" And "Driving Miss Daisy" is proof. It's a great movie.
**** (out of four)
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