Neal is Jewel Mae "Cookie" Orcutt, the matriarch of a Mississippi family with its share of female eccentrics. When Cookie offs herself to join her deceased husband, her officious, scandal-fearing spinster neice Camille (Close) destroys the suicide note, setting up the family's loyal, good-natured handyman (Dutton) for the fall. At the same time, she's directing practically the whole town in a church performance of "Salome." Excellent script by Rapp allows more characterization than usual for Altman, as well as a pleasantly leisurely pace. Flawless ensemble work (another Altman hallmark) is highlighted by the performances of Neal, Close, and Dutton.
USA Home Entertainment, 1 W. Forest, Englewood, NJ 07631-4004, Phone: (201)871-1000, URL: http://www.polygram-us.com
Available on VHS, DVD
Running time 118 minutes.
Natl. Bd. of Review 1999: Support. Actress (Moore).
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