Cookie's Fortune
PG-13
Entertainment: +2 1/2
Acceptability: -2

It's Easter weekend in the small southern town of Holly Springs, Mississippi, where the main conversation seems to be fish and fishing. Willis (Charles S. Dutton), the black caretaker for Cookie Orcutt (Patricia Neal), plans a special surprise because Cookie's niece Emma (Liv Tyler) has returned to town. But missing her late husband more as the years go by, Cookie commits suicide. Her sister Camille (Glenn Close) discovers the body and, thinking suicide is a disgraceful act, tries to make it look like a murder. Initial clues lead to Willis and the investigation is on. This low-key, humorous mystery is an enjoyable departure from violent action films and the outstanding cast captures the quirky nature of small town neighbors.

Thinking Cookie's death cast shame on her family, Camille lies and tells her other sister to lie about the suicide, but her lying backfires later. Although initial clues point to Willis, one deputy knows he's innocent because of his character while fishing. Meanwhile, Camille ignores the police instructions about the crime scene and moves into what she thinks is her inheritance. Willis and Emma are shown sharing a bottle of whiskey several times and one scene implies Willis is drunk. Emma works at a fish market and one disgusting scene shows her boss taking heads off fish and pulling their insides out. A couple of sexual encounters are implied as Emma and a young deputy sensually kiss and begin removing their clothes, but they move into another room. Later they are seen rearranging their clothes. Willis also talks about his mixed racial ancestry, having a white grandfather. Foul language is mostly limited to mild crudities, but four s-words and a few regular profanities mar the dialogue. Without the gratuitous sexual content and foul language, COOKIE'S FORTUNE could have been appropriate fun entertainment for older teens and adults.

Preview Reviewer: Paul Bicking
Distributor: October Films

Summary
Crude Language: Many (22) times - Mild 18, Moderate 4
Obscene Language: Several (6) times - 4 s-words, 1 other, 1 f-word mouthed but not heard
Profanity: Many (12) times - Regular 10 (GD 2, J 4, 1 Jeez, My G 3), Exclamatory 2 (OG)
Violence: Few times - Moderate - woman shoots self (off-camera), bloody bedclothes
Sexual Intercourse: Implied twice (couple taking clothes off goes into room, clothes being adjusted later)
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: Man asked if woman sleeps in her clothes, sensual kissing, couple begins removing each other's woman undoes few buttons on blouse to look sexier, man says woman can move into his house, reference to not getting laid
Drug Abuse: Alcohol drinking, pipe smoking
Other: Fish skinned and gutted, woman says suicide is disgraceful, woman lies and tells sister to lie to cover-up suicide, woman prays before bed, church does Easter drama of Salome and John the Baptist, woman ignores police instruction, mixed racial ancestry discussed
Running Time: 100 minutes
Intended Audience: Older teens and adults

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