Ted Kramer's wife leaves her husband, allowing for a lost bond to be rediscovered between Ted and his son, Billy. But a heated custody battle ensues over the divorced couple's son, deepening the wounds left by the separation.
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 <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Alfred Uhry's 1987 play "Driving Miss Daisy," on which this movie is based, is the first of his "Atlanta Trilogy" of plays about Jews in Atlanta, Georgia. The other two plays are "The Last Night of Ballyhoo" (1996), a play about a family preparing for the Atlanta Jewish society cotillion, and "Parade" (1998), a musical about the false conviction and 1915 lynching of Atlanta factory manager Leo Frank. See more »
Hoke drives past the same house with the same truck in front of it twice in in fifteen seconds when going home from the temple. See more »
[on the phone, trying to get a ride to her hair appointment]
Well, I need you now, I have to be at the beauty parlor in half an hour... no, I most certainly did NOT know you have to call a minimum of three hours ahead! I don't know why you call yourselves a taxicab company if you can't provide taxicabs!
[in the other room, polishing a table]
Why don't you call your son down at the mill? He'll send somebody for you.
That won't be necessary... I'll just cancel the appointment and fix my own hair!
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Man, did I change my mind about this film, maybe more than any film I've ever watched. The first time I saw it I did not like it and thought it was very overrated. Why I gave more looks, I don't really remember but it went to "fair" the next time and "excellent" by the third. I think the main reason is that I shifted my focus off the irritable old woman (Jessica Tandy) to the long-suffering servant (Morgan Freeman).
Once I looked at this story through "Hoke's" eyes, it became an inspiring story. Freeman's character, "Hoke Colburn," simply provides the best the example of a what true servant of God should act like, plain-and-simple. It's one of the best examples on film I've seen of of patience, kindness, dedication and dignity in a difficult situation. It's also always inspiring to see a nice, good person overturn and win over the opposite with sheer kindness.
Another factor that has raised my rating of this film is the latest "newly-restored widescreen edition," which finally presents this movie as it should be, with all its beautiful cinematography. The sets in here are great, a terrific look at the 1950s through storefronts, billboards, automobiles, etc.
One thing this film taught me: "Hoke's" attitude isn't the only important aspect of this story. It's how we, as viewers, look at things, too, that makes a difference.
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