Cinema: A Home-Cooked Tale

A very old lady (Jessica Tandy), confined to a nursing home, strikes up a friendship with a younger woman (Kathy Bates) who eats too much because she is emotionally starved by her marriage. What brings them together is a long, slightly shaggy story the older woman relates. It is about the friendship of headstrong Idgie (Mary Stuart Masterson) and ladylike Ruth (Mary-Louise Parker), two young women of the 1930s, and it involves home cooking, wife beating and a murder. It is an uneasy blend of (among other things) whimsy, melodrama, the Ku Klux Klan and feminist sentiment that coexists rather awkwardly...

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