Driving Miss Daisy is a 1989 American comedy-drama film adapted from the Alfred Uhry play of the same title. The film was directed by Bruce Beresford with Morgan Freeman reprising Hoke's role and Jessica Tandy playing Miss Daisy. The story defines Daisy and her point of view through a network of relationships and emotions by focusing on her home life, synagogue, friends, family, fears, and concerns. Hoke is rarely seen out of Miss Daisy's presence, although the title implies that the story is told from his perspective. Driving Miss Daisy won the Academy Award for Best Picture.
It is 1948 and Mrs. ("Miss") Daisy Werthan (Jessica Tandy), a 72-year-old Jewish widow, lives in Atlanta, Georgia, alone except for an African American housemaid named Idella (Esther Rolle). After a driving mishap where her Chrysler automobile is demolished, Miss Daisy’s son, Boolie (Dan Aykroyd), tells her she will have to get a chauffeur because no insurance company will insure her. She refuses, but Boolie is determined to find her one. Meanwhile, she is stuck at home and is unable to run errands or visit friends.
Boolie finds a man named Hoke Colburn (Morgan Freeman), who had driven for a local judge until he died, and he decided to remain in the area rather than accompany the judge's widow when she moved away.
Miss Daisy at first refuses to let Hoke drive her, going so far as to walk to the local Piggly Wiggly. It is revealed that her reluctance to be driven around is because she is embarrassed. People might think she is either too elderly to drive, or so well off that she can pay for a driver.
Daisy starts to accept Hoke and the fact that she needs him to drive her around. Miss Daisy finds out that Hoke cannot read, so she teaches him how to read. Over the years Hoke drives Daisy in a succession of vehicles including a Hudson Commodore and a series of Cadillacs. When it became time to trade in the Hudson for a new Cadillac in 1955, Hoke purchased the Hudson and used it as his personal vehicle. He repeated the practice with Miss Daisy's subsequent vehicles as well.
Miss Daisy has Hoke drive her to her brother's 90th birthday party in Mobile, Alabama. Hoke reveals, during the trip, that it is the first time that he has left his home state of Georgia. During their trip from Atlanta to Mobile, Daisy realizes that Hoke's race affects how others treat him in this society. Therefore, she is further opened to the social aspects of discrimination. As Daisy and Hoke spend time together, she gains appreciation for Hoke's many skills.
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