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Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)

PG-13  |   |  Drama  |  24 January 1992 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 49,006 users  
Reviews: 164 user | 53 critic

A housewife who is unhappy with her life befriends an old lady in a nursing home and is enthralled by the tales she tells of people she used to know.



(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 6 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Timothy Scott ...
Smokey Lonesome (as Tim Scott)
Mama Threadgoode
Women's Awareness Teacher
Prosecutor Percy
Reverend Scroggins
Sheriff Curtis Smoote


Evelyn Couch is having trouble in her marriage, and no one seems to take her seriously. While in a nursing home visiting relatives, she meets Ninny Threadgoode, an outgoing old woman, who tells her the story of Idgie Threadgoode, a young woman in 1920's Alabama. Through Idgie's inspiring life, Evelyn learns to be more assertive and builds a lasting friendship of her own with Ninny. Written by Kevin <Kibble@vm.temple.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


The secret of life? The secret's in the sauce.




PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

24 January 1992 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tomates verdes fritos  »

Box Office


$11,000,000 (estimated)


$80,100,000 (USA)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Carol Sobieski wrote the first draft of the screenplay, which the director and producers thought were wonderful - but it wasn't the movie they wanted to do. Next, Fannie Flagg was brought on to do another draft and she finished seventy pages before quitting. With no money left to hire another writer, director Jon Avnet took it upon himself to write the screenplay and spent the next three years doing so. He did, however, stay in close contact with Flagg to make sure he stayed true to her book. See more »


Ed says the Evelyn has hit the younger girls car 6 times, but in the film she only hits it 4 times. See more »


Idgie Threadgoode: One time, there this this lake
Idgie Threadgoode: and uh, it was right outside of town. We used to go fishin' and swimmin' and canoein' in it, and uh
Idgie Threadgoode: this one November this flock o'ducks came in and landed on that lake, and uh the tempurature dropped sp fast that the lake froze right there and then the ducks, they flew off ya see
[voice breaking]
Idgie Threadgoode: and took the lake with them
[small sob]
Idgie Threadgoode: and uh, now they say that lake is over in Georgia...
See more »


Referenced in Nostalgia Critic: Mamma Mia! (2015) See more »


Cool Down Yonder
Written by Ira Tucker
Produced by Anthony Heilbut
Arranged and Performed by Marion Williams
Courtesy of Spirit Feel Records
See more »

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User Reviews

The Story Stays With You Long After the Movie Ends
3 July 2003 | by (New York, NY) – See all my reviews

This is one of my top five films of all time. I was somewhat skeptical the first time I saw it because I adored the book and I knew there were some changes, but I found the essence of Fannie Flagg's fabulous novel in tact. This is a story that burrows into your heart and mind and stays there. It is absolutely magical storytelling with a stellar cast and beautifully written characters that never fade from memory.

A time and place in America, filled with the best and the worst of our life and history, is impeccably captured. The flashbacks take us to the time of an Alabama whistle stop town that was a bustling hub when the railroad was the center of all movement. This was the era of hobos and simple pleasures. The scenes from the past become more powerful by the juxtaposition to modern times, where the story begins and returns at intervals.

Kathy Bates plays Evelyn Couch, an unhappy middle-aged housewife who stumbles on Ninny Threadgoode (the superb Jessica Tandy) one day by accident at the nursing home where she is visiting one of her husband's relatives. The two have an instant chemistry and a deep friendship begins. Ninny proceeds to tell Evelyn the story of Idgie and Ruth, two young women who shared an amazing friendship and love 50 years earlier.

This movie has to be experienced, as mere descriptions might sound like another southern-flavored movie about women or a weepy nostalgic tale. It is much more than that, and more than the most glowing review can ever convey. If you are reading this and haven't seen it, please make a point to. The actors are nothing short of magical. All four actresses (Jessica Tandy, Kathy Bates, Mary Stuart Masterson and Mary-Louise Parker) are at the top of their craft.

I will borrow a line from Ninny Threadgoode to describe how I always feel after seeing this film. "I may be sitting here in this nursing home but in my mind I'm over at the Whistle Stop Cafe having a plate of Fried Green Tomatoes".

I may be sitting here finishing this comment but in my mind I'm at the Whistle Stop Cafe. That's how powerful this story is for me.

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