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Driving Miss Daisy

Driving Miss Daisy
Driving Miss Daisy
Driving Miss Daisy
  • PG
  • 1h 39m
  • 1989
Certified Fresh84%
Common Sense Media Iconage 13+
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Morgan Freeman and Jessica Tandy star in the screen adaptation of Alfred Uhry's Pulitzer Prize-winning play. Over 25 years, as the American South changes profoundly, the friendship between a highly independent, eccentric Jewish matron and the stalwart and very patient black widower her son hires as chauffeur endures and deepens, testing the limits of their differences . . . and similarities.
© 1989 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Rotten Tomatoes® Score

Certified Fresh84%
Critics Consensus: While it's fueled in part by outdated stereotypes, Driving Miss Daisy takes audiences on a heartwarming journey with a pair of outstanding actors.
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Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media Iconage 13+
Common Sense Says
Tale of unlikely friendship has stereotypes, some language.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Driving Miss Daisy is an Oscar-winning 1989 drama set in Atlanta, from the post-World War II years to the civil rights era. It shows the close friendship between Daisy (Jessica Tandy), a White Jewish woman in her 70s, and Hoke (Morgan Freeman), the Black man employed as her driver. While on a road trip, a trooper refers to them using the "N" word and "old Jew woman." Daisy's synagogue is bombed (not shown), which reminds Hoke of the aftermath of a lynching he witnessed as a young boy in rural Georgia, in which he found his friend's father hanging from a tree. The movie avoids overtly denouncing racism, preferring to hint at systemic injustice: For instance, while Daisy's son, a successful businessman, "supports" the message of Martin Luther King Jr., he's worried that public calls for civil rights would, as a Jewish White man in the South, cost him his business relationships. Daisy similarly doesn't consider herself racist, hotly reminding Hoke that she grew up poor. But she indulges in prejudiced behavior, such as not inviting Hoke to a speech she attends given by Dr. King until Hoke is driving her to the venue. She also falsely accuses Hoke of stealing from her pantry; as she tells her son, "they all take things, you know." For his part, Hoke admirably threads the needle of using enough deference to keep his job, through frequent "yes, sir" and "yes'm"s, but also maintains key moments of agency wherein he calls Daisy out for unreasonable demands. The movie takes place among these themes, as well as themes of trying to maintain your independence while aging, but its focus on delivering a feel-good story of two unlikely friends -- paired with an overly simplistic and nostalgic take on systemic injustice -- blunts more meaningful messages.

A Lot or A Little?

The parents’ guide to what’s in this movie.
Positive Messages
Positive Role Models
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
More on Common Sense Media

Additional Info

  • Genre:Drama, Comedy
  • Release Date:December 13, 1989
  • Languages:English
  • Captions:English
  • Audio Format:
  • Screen Pass Eligible:Yes
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