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Driving Miss Daisy


August1991

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Movies that are almost accurate, almost reach a truth, intrigue me. 'Driving Miss Daisy' won Best Picture in 1989 and Bruce Beresford, its director, also made Black Robe. Both movies came close to truth, being accurate. What was missing? I quibble about accents or specific scenes, directions of canoes and objects on a table. If you watch Driving Miss Daisy (and I strongly suggest you rent it), then I'd ignore Dan Ackroyd's accent. To enjoy it, this movie requires a slightly wider berth to suspend belief. I wonder if I'm the person who misses the truth because of a quibble. In fact, Driving Miss Daisy has some blatant truths in evidence.

This movie is delightfully Politically Correct before political correctness became a political movement. [synopsis: White American Southern female Jew has Black male Chauffeur.] This movie works, and it works on many levels. We see people as they are, and not as members of stereotypical groups. But we also see stubborn old people dealing with age. This movie is prescient. IMV, this movie works because, in 1989, it could still touch an honest, concrete past of truth. The screenplay is an adaptation of a play. No wonder.

Like Abraham Lincoln, Barack Obama dances around the main point of his presidency. This movie does the same, with occasional flashes of honesty. In this movie, a black man becomes a chauffeur to a white jewish woman, (As they say, are there any black jewish women?) America has a black president, and Jessica Tandy had a black chauffeur. In Canada, when Trudeau became PM, he at least had the honesty to acknowledge his situation: he wanted to put Quebec in its place and that was within Canada. This movie, and Trudeau and Levesque, had an honesty that Obama and political correctness lack. This movie at least calls the spade - we Canadians have done it for ages.

Edited by August1991
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