Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)
Fried Green Tomatoes is a 1991 comedy-drama lesbian film based on the novel Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe by Fannie Flagg. Directed by Jon Avnet and written by Fannie Flagg and Carol Sobieski, it stars Kathy Bates, Jessica Tandy, Mary Stuart Masterson, and Mary-Louise Parker. It tells the story of a Depression-era friendship between two women, Ruth and Idgie, and a 1980s friendship between Evelyn, a middle-aged housewife, and Ninny, an elderly woman who knew Ruth and Idgie. The centerpiece and parallel story concerns the murder of Ruth’s abusive husband and the accusations that follow.
A woman learns the value of friendship as she hears the story of two women and how their friendship shaped their lives in this warm comedy-drama. Evelyn Couch (Kathy Bates) is an emotionally repressed housewife with a habit of drowning her sorrows in candy bars. Her husband Ed (Gailard Sartain) barely acknowledges her existence, and while he visits his aunt at a nursing home every week, Evelyn is not permitted to come into the room because the old women doesn’t like her.
The film received a generally positive reception from film critics and was nominated for two Academy Awards. The filmmakers drew criticism from some reviewers for removing the lesbian content of the book’s plot, but the film won a GLAAD Media Award for “best lesbian content”.