Monday 22 August 2005

Cookie's Fortune (1999) - ickleReview (TV)

Robert Altman movie set in smalltown Holly Springs, Mississippi. Cookie (Patrician Neal), a grand old lady with a cheerful demeanour but still grieving at the loss of her husband, Buck, commits suicide. Camille (Glenn Close) and Cora (Julianne Moore) try to disguise it as a murder. Camille is hungry for the inheritance of her aunt and claims not to want to bring shame on the family; Cora is too dumb and simple to object. Meanwhile, Willis (Charles S. Dutton), Cookie's best friend, ambles around the town running errands with the Best Walk in Motion Picture History, before he is arrested on suspicion of murder, even though everyone at the Sheriff's office knows he didn't do it. Emma (Liv Tyler), Cora's illegitimate daughter, sits in the open cell with him, playing Scrabble, making him coffee with bourbon, and escaping now and again for a quickie with her boyfriend, Deputy Jason Brown (Chris O'Donnell), even though she's the town's petty crook.

An endearing and mildly humorous story of backwoods smalltown America, gentle police incompetence and complicated family relations. Glenn Close's character, Camille, stands out as an uppity snob, lacking the easy-going nature of the rest of the town - and it comes back to bite her in the end.

Nugget: a leisurely paced film with quirky characters, slightly exaggerated in the quaint way that Hollywood tends to portray the Deep South. Race, it seems, is no longer such a big issue in this part of Ole Miss. But worth watching just for That Walk...

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