Why did I always used to think Driving Miss Daisy was about a woman with talking, flying car? (Vivid imagination…) Needless to say, when I arrived at the cinema to watch the encore screening of the 2013 run of the play – the version I saw was acted out in Melbourne – I had little idea what I was letting myself in for.
The play was beautiful: smart, savvy and poignant, with subtle lessons and no overt plot, per se – rather, it tracked the blooming friendship of stubborn southern matriarch Daisy and her driver, Hoke.
Set during a period of intense change – with the action kicking off in 1948, just three years after the end of WW2 – the story tackles issues of race, religion and pride. Humour bubbles behind the dialogue, and the warmth of Angela Lansbury and James Earl Jones as Daisy and Hoke is irresistible. (Read a really sweet interview with them both here.)
After the play ended, a live Q&A with Angela Lansbury, was screened from the BFI. She really is amazing; she’s 88 years old and sharp as a tack, and had endless stories to share with the interviewer.