Driving Miss Daisy - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Driving Miss Daisy Reviews

Page 1 of 85
May 22, 2019
I really wanted to like this film because many people consider it to be one of the worst, or most overrated Best Picture winners, and I enjoy being a contrarian. Unfortunately I found as little to like about the film as most people do and the treatment of the African-American characters felt patronizing at best. I quite like Crimes of the Heart (1986) and Rich in Love (1992) so I wanted to see director Bruce Beresford's tender, sweet directorial style applied to more serious subject matter, sadly he couldn't save a poorly written film. In the year of When Harry Met Sally´┐ 1/2 1/2 1/2 (1989) it seems ridiculous that this forgettable but verging on offensive little film took the big prize.

Daisy Werthan, Jessica Tandy, is an aging Southern widow who struggles to drive but is just as stubborn as ever when her son Boolie, Dan Aykroyd, essentially pushes an African-American driver Hoke Colburn, Morgan Freeman, on her. Over the next 25 years the two develop a strong bond, purportedly, as she faces up to her racism in the age of the civil rights movement. When she becomes senile and is moved into a hospital Hoke continues to support her and the two remain friends as they sit down and talk at the end of the film.

A lot of reviewers praised this film for it's ´┐ 1/2 1/2 1/2~subtlety' in showing Werthan's shift from racist to friend of Hoke's and non-prejudiced person. To me the shift wasn't subtle it was just non-existent as the main character remains rude and disrespectful of Hoke while he acts like a perfect angel and puts up with her offensive remarks while laughing at her bad ´┐ 1/2 1/2 1/2~jokes'. I needed something to explain how she had changed, become a better person and come to understand that her prejudices against African-Americans were wrong. No, I didn't need the film to be as graceless as Green Book (2018) in it's presentation of the enlightenment of a racist character but at least in that film we get moments that endear us to the main character. If this film was going to go full white savior I at least needed to see why the white character was a positive influence on the African-American's life.

The issue is not the performances of the two leads with Tandy and Freeman trying their damnedest to bring to life characters that are flat on the page but Aykroyd felt completely out of place and his Southern accent was unconvincing. Tandy does a good job with her accent and the various mannerisms of an uptight older lady, she sells her moments of pain as she feels neglected by her son and fully commits to making her character insufferable. Freeman is reliably charming as the driver and his quiet anger and hurt as he is humiliated by two racist police officers was powerful. Aykroyd comes in and ruins the beautiful subtlety in the performances of the two leads as he fudges all of his lines and acts more like a character in a Harold Ramis directed film than in a prestige picture about race relations.

The positive aspects of the film, there were few, were the cinematography and the score. The South is a beautiful place, as proven by the much better Fried Green Tomatoes (1991), and we get to see the flowers in the trees and the idyllic rural landscapes in all their glory. Hans Zimmer who also contributed his skills to 1988's Best Picture winner Rain Man produces the most fun element of the film as his score contains several bright, inspiring compositions that keep the film going as it repeatedly drags.

I'm not going to lie, When Harry Met Sally´┐ 1/2 1/2 1/2 is one of my favorite films of the 1980s and it's lack of Best Picture nomination incenses me. When considering the 1989 Best Picture nominees they are relatively weak but I would consider Born on the Fourth of July to be the best. Obviously I would have rewarded that film over this awkwardly mishandled tale of ´┐ 1/2 1/2 1/2~friendship' between a horrible woman and an unbelievably patient and understanding man. I would not recommend this film to anybody unless they want to see this part of the world shot beautifully, in which case there are several other films that do that better, which isn't exactly incentive to sit down for nearly two hours of white savior narrative.
½ May 2, 2019
What the film says is sentimental and moving, but if the Academy wanted to award Best Picture to a movie that touches on race in a actually substantial way, then they should have chosen to nominate Spike Lee's "Do the Right Thing."
March 20, 2019
Daisy is a caricature of those people we all grew up around that could never be wrong (heck, we try to push this as okay behavior for 50% of the population even today) but that if you word things the right way you can have a loving relationship with them. Working with such a person is a constant struggle of word games and oftentimes lying to make them comfortable, and it can be pretty frustrating. It's a cute little movie that shows in a way that even when we are old we can still change, even if it's only a little. Now, is would I nominate it for Best Picture? Nope, not sure why that happened... Both characters probably deserved nominations for their performances though, as they exuded their characters perfectly, and I would watch this again without complaint.
½ February 2, 2019
A heartwarming tale of unlikely friendship, the performances are what carry the movie, although it also has a good score, good costume design, and good cinematography.
January 26, 2019
One of the best movies
½ January 4, 2019
Everyday life of a retired schoolteacher changes when her son forces a driver on her to take her whenever she needs to go somewhere.
Brilliantly portrayed by Freeman and Tandy, it is a relatively sweet story (with a dash of bitter here and there) about life and friendship in the last decades of life.
December 29, 2018
Huge Oscar-winner back in 1989 and one of the most known films of the beloved actor Morgan Freeman. He is Hoke here, Daisy's driver. She is getting older and can't drive for herself anymore. Boolie, her son, makes sure Hoke get's payed as he works as her driver, but most importantly her friend in thick and thin.

This is an all right film. The story is nice and sweet, the acting is great and the production is typical. It's no big surpizes here and the A-rating makes it a bit flat and easy to predict. It has not held up that greatly and it does not stand out for me.

OK film, but way too safe.

6 out of 10 can's of salmon.
½ December 5, 2018
Light, charming, and complex enough to keep one interested and entertained throughout, this stage-to-screen adaptation shrugs off the usual hazards of overlong conversations in the same place in favor of comfortably paced, and filmicly minded, character study.
April 20, 2018
you never allow me to turn it on..

Driving Miss Daisy

The writer; Alfred Uhry, has spent a lot on the bonding of the lead characters which is clearly visible and thoroughly moving and entertaining, that clearly stands alone and becomes the highlight of this subtle dramatic feature. Bruce Bereford is decent on executing the scene and offering the appropriate tone to it but a better editing and cinematography would have changed the whole course. Morgan Freeman holds on to his part tightly along with Jessica Tandy who overpowers Morgan completely with her genuinely moving performance. Driving Miss Daisy is a slow pill that is effective to its core but it sure tests one's patience along with it which in the end is worth the drama.
March 16, 2018
Extremely soft movie making with well rounded, relatable and real characters. Made with a lot of patience and heart, it is a great watch.
½ December 29, 2017
Ok movie starring Morgan freeman.
December 28, 2017
It's a toss-up on whether you'll like this one or not, basically based on what type of movie you like. I did not. I thought the dialogue was kinda painful to listen to, except at the very end. While all the black characters are different from each other, none are smarter than the dumbest white character, which Idk about you but that sounds pretty racist. And I'm not the most knowledgeable on history but I know enough to say that this movie mashes up decades more than YouTubers mashup anime theme songs. But maybe you'll look past that for the stellar acting (for the script, anyways) and feel-good tone. It's good if you find it on cable, but I don't wanna watch it again. Did the Academy REALLY pass up on Do the Right Thing, Born on the Fourth of July and Glory for this movie?
Super Reviewer
December 11, 2017
A showcase of the undeniable talents of Freeman and Tandy - the latter of which became the oldest actress to receive an Academy Award for best actress. Driving Miss Daisy cleverly and briefly touches on themes of prejudice, alienation and segregation and whilst these themes are only touched on briefly, this seems to almost normalise them and therefore makes the film's time and location seem ever more present. The absence of focus on the time the film is set allows the audience to focus on the warmth and familiarity that slowly grows between Daisy and her chauffeur Hoke. The ending of the film seems rushed and I'm unsure why they didn't include a bit more in the film to highlight the ageing of the two and the mental decline of the titular character, as such sudden jumps are made to years later and then suddenly the film's credits are rolling, it seems strange. At just under 99 minutes, the film could've done with being a bit longer perhaps.
November 2, 2017
Driving Miss Daisy: Heartfelt, emotinal, moving and coats on Morgan Freeman and Jessica Tandy's excellent preformance.
½ October 31, 2017
Slow, depressing realistic movie about cranky snobby elderly Southern Jewish woman who is declining in function and her African American driver who deals with her rudeness
because he needs the job.
October 8, 2017
what a nice movie, Maybe it's too nice for it's own good, and the message may be a bit too shoved down our throat. But, i thoroughly enjoyed this funny, and moving story from start to finish.
September 30, 2017
A good movie for old people. Like, really old people, who are stubborn but kind.
September 15, 2017
This movie won 4 out of 9 Oscars and aside from Jessica Tandy's performance, I am not sure why. This movie does have it's charm, and I wouldn't say that it is bad. However, I also wouldn't say that it was best picture material...but it won it anyway. Loved the cast, but found the story to be a bit directionless.
½ August 28, 2017
BEST PICTURE 1989: a sweet film about an old lady who can't drive anymore because of her sight. Her concerned son hires a driver to driver her places. She is stubborn and reluctant for help until she gets to know him better and they become friends
August 27, 2017
Morgan Freeman is amazing, as usual.
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