Top 3 Tuesday - movie moments: 'Steel Magnolias'

Steel Magnolias is up there amongst my all-time favourite films. It's a film about friendship and has a stellar cast including Sally Field, Shirley MacLaine, Julia Roberts, Olympia Dukakis, Dolly Parton and Daryl Hannah. These ladies are all on form in what is both a terribly sad and outrageously funny movie. One minute you're laughing, the next you're crying. It's that brilliant. I never get sick of watching this movie and I've lost count just how many times I've seen it. :-)

So here are my three favourite moments from Steel Magnolias...

3) Ouiser tells it like it is - Shirley MacLaine's character Ouiser is a bitter woman who, kind-hearted as she may be underneath, doesn't hold back her criticism or harsh words. The entire film is littered with classic Ouiser one-liners so it was hard for me to pick my absolute favourite Ouiser moment, but there is one scene that pretty much sums up Ouiser in just a few lines. It's brilliantly funny and a wonderful display of old-woman crankiness by Shirley. This is how it goes...

Ouiser: The only reason people are nice to me is because I have more money than God. Now I'm not about to open a new can of worms.
M'Lynn: Ouiser?
Ouiser: Whaaat?
M'Lynn: If this is really how you feel it isn't healthy. Maybe you should think about coming down to the guidance centre and talking to someone. We're there to help.
Ouiser: I'm not crazy M'Lynn. I've just been in a very bad mood for forty years!

2) Shelby's philosophy of life - Julia Robert's character Shelby has a lot of health issues but she still wants a normal life, and a baby. Her mother M'Lynn (Sally Field) is concerned about her and disagrees with Shelby's decision to risk her health to be a parent. In a heartbreaking scene Shelby pleads for her mother's support and explains her desire for something wonderful in her life, no matter how shortlived it might be. Here it is...

Shelby: Whenever any of us asked you what you wanted for us when we grew up what did you say?
M'Lynn: Shelby, I'm not in the mood to play games.
Shelby: Just tell me what you said, Mama, what did you say?
M'Lynn: The only thing I have ever said to you, ever, is that I want you to be happy.
Shelby: Okay, the one thing that would make me happy is to have a baby. If I could adopt one I would, but I can't. I'm going to have a baby, and I wish you'd be happy too.
M'Lynn: I'll tell you what I wish. Well, I don't know what I wish.
Shelby: Mama, I don't know why you have to make everything so difficult. I look at having a baby as the opportunity of a lifetime. Sure there may be risk involved, but that's true for anybody. But you get through it and life goes on. And when it's all said and done there will be a little piece of immortality with Jackson's good looks and my sense of style, I hope. Please, please I need your support. I would rather have thirty minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special. 

1) M'Lynn breaks down - In one of Sally Field's best performances, her character M'Lynn expresses the gamut of emotions running through her after Shelby's death. She begs to know why this terrible thing has happened and then the anger comes out. This scene is agonising to watch because Sally is so powerful in her delivery. It's a very serious scene...that is until Olympia Dukakis' Clairee brings some much needed hilarity to the moment. :-) I leave you the scene to watch -

1 comment:

  1. One of my favourite movies. We used to laugh about the characters being like our group of friends at the Lake. I was Ouiser ;-)) so much emotion and great lines in this movie thanks for sparking some good memories. You chose one of the most memorable scenes to share xx