Cookie's Fortune (1999) - Comedy, Drama

Hohum Score



Conflict arises in the small town of Holly Springs when an old woman's death causes a variety of reactions among family and friends.

IMDB: 6.8
Director: Robert Altman
Stars: Glenn Close, Julianne Moore
Length: 118 Minutes
PG Rating: PG-13
Reviews: 24 out of 115 found boring (20.86%)

One-line Reviews (93)

The rich ensemble cast makes it worth watching alone.

This film is slow, is just plan boring, uneventful and about 2 hours to long iii) You get some trailers at the beginning which are much more entertaining.

At least, this latest work boasts an intriguing plot line that helps to sustain our interest – and, it must be stated right at the outset, that the second half of the film is far more engaging than the first, partly because of the intricacy of the story.

Aside from that and despite the confusing "revelation of secrets" at the end (which seemed rushed and forced,)I loved this movie because of the atmosphere of the town, the acting, and the writing which was often laugh-aloud funny.

The only criticisms I can levy at the film is that the ending is a little confusing and hard to understand.

Director Robert Altman took up this film,and one might question why an auteur who's rep is for more intense and cutting work(M*A*S*H,The Player and Short Cuts among them)would want to helm a film story that is as relaxed and pleasantly humored as Cookie's Fortune.

In the hands of Moore, she became multi-dimensional and fascinating.

It gets off to a slow start, and doesn't really get interesting until the death of Cookie.

Set in a small, sleepy Southern town, the narrative revolves around the complications resulting from the unexpected death of an aging matriarch named Cookie.

Set in a minuscule Southern town defined by colorful people, sweaty heat, and catfish, in that order, "Cookie's Fortune" details the sudden death of Jewel Mae "Cookie" Orcutt (Patricia Neal), an elderly widow tired of living alone and tired of her mundane life.

Without the significant performances featuring talents Liv Tyler, Chris O'Donnell, Ned Beatty, Lyle Lovett,and many more, "Cookie's Fortune" would remain boring and undeveloped.

Even Chris O'Donnell (who's usually just very cute and very bland) is good.

I enjoyed it and it's made me want to go look out some of the director's other stuff.

Absolutely nothing happens in this part of the movie.

Anne Rapp's story is given a slow,sweet, eccentric pace,which seems perfect for the part of America it's set in.

Robert Altman gets wonderful performances out of a wonderful cast in this delightful, goofy, entertaining tale of murder (?

What a waste of time.

It's one of his most impeccably entertaining films.

really enjoyable movie.

Banal storyline .

In the hands of Christina Ricci, or Drew Barrymore, or even Winona Ryder, this might have been a compelling character; in Tyler's hands, she's Pamela Abbott with a butch-dyke do and a bunch of unpaid parking tickets.

Altman should go into retirement, as should Scorsese, and all the other former great directors who waste everyone's time with their new material.

I'm sorry but it was so dull that you it is more fun to count to empty seats than follow the plot.

I felt like I'd had a rest on a hot day after watching it – it was enjoyable and undemanding.

I was bored to death.

This is a very very slow film.

The second, submerged, mystery story is the more dark and compelling, making full use of the Deep South locale, which was, initially, irritating.

Cookie's Fortune moves at a leisurely pace that may seem slow to someone who hasn't grown up listening to southern storytellers.

(Like Sting's famous song-line: "Life was easy when it was boring", or "This film was easier when it was boring".

I thought it was a fascinating, enjoyable film.

Shot in that same bland, over-lit, TV-movie style that afflicted the equally dismal "Midnight in the Garden of dull and stupid".

It was suprisingly suspenseful as well, and quite amusing too.

On the CZTV website, 21 percent of viewers rated it as "waste of time" whereas 72 percent rated it as "excellent," with almost nothing in between.

A very entertaining film .

Not perfect, but entertaining still the same .

It is a simple story, deliberately slow moving, where a black live-in handyman (Charles S.

In this comedy (alternatively billed as a murder mystery) written by Anne Rapp and set in "Holly Springs", a small (mythical) Mississippi cotton town, Robert Altman is able to combine all these ingredients to produce an entertaining story with a light satirical touch.

I guess this was supposed to be a sort of character study, but the characters were never developed, seemed one dimensional, were uninteresting, and worst of all, could not act.


Yet the catfish are still biting, the climate still humid and soporific and the way of life still languid.

Robert Altman (yes, the auteur who made "MASH" and "The Long Goodbye") presents us with a film so tedious, so pointless, so insultingly drab and banal that it makes you want to chew your own fingers off with frustration.

It gets so confusing and incoherent in the final act, I don't have a clue what possessed writer Anne Rapp.

This film started well and light and pretty much managed to retain that feeling for the duration, making it enjoyable to watch.

I would compare my disappointment with "Cookie's Fortune" with the similar one I had a couple of years ago when highly acclaimed and Academy decorated "Slingblade" left me baffled in a similar way: what did people see in that boring stupid movie that I did not?

As for Glenn Close, she's pretty good, but I'm simply tired of her disturbed, pretentious characters and her histrionics.

It was unbearably boring!!!

After five minutes, I already felt manipulated by the trite dialogue.

In particular, these drawn-out "Peeping Tom" shots successfully isolate the characters at their most vulnerable moments, building suspense from beginning to end.

Even though the story line was somewhat predictable, the small town characters were interesting enough to keep me watching!

See the film for an entertaining romp with a glint of American commentary that is enough to make COOKIE'S FORTUNE both important and delightful.

It's not for everyone, but I enjoyed it entirely.

Worth watching.

But, maybe it's just me, the ending was predictable and in the end gave a lasting impression that COOKIE'S FORTUNE was just an easy-going, nice little flick - not great Altman, just OK Altman.

" Camille is the smartest character in the picture, but she's also the one who doesn't belong; the one who, in a panic attack, might just turn this lovable comedy into a dreary exercise in unhinged madness.

Very positive and enjoyable movie.

I thought that this would be a comedy about a Chinese restaurant or something (The only thing that I knew before taping it, was that it was a comedy from Robert Altman, that's where my confusion comes from).

Nothing went wrong, except that it was unbelievably slow, predictable, illogical, syrupy, and, from time to time, plain stupid.

Early on, you know that it is going nowhere, and that the trip there isn't going to be much fun.

The atmosphere really gels, the cast are cohesive, the plot situation is interesting and its subtextual implications on suicide is also fascinating.

Enjoyed it.

The film is simply boring!

LIFE moves slowly there, and Altman has done much slower-paced films than this (That Cold Day in the Park, Images, Quintet).

This ensemble piece(Altman seems lost WITHOUT a large cast to work with),centers around the Duvall family of Holly Springs,Mississippi, mostly with sisters Camille(hyperventilating Glenn Close) and Cora(Julianne Moore,fantastic as uncharacteristically dull and child-like here) and their Aunt,the Cookie in the title(played with nutty joy by veteran actor Patricia Neal).

This film is also Patricia Neal's major big screen appearance in her later years, nostalgia strikes, Cookie is a woman who has blissfully fulfilled her mission in life and has no regret in joining her late husband in the paradise, Neal nabs a doddering front of senility, and furthermore, camouflages her unexpected decision with a cordial rapport between her and Willis.

Very enjoyable.

Rufus Thomas has an entertaining bit part.

Even with its flaws, the film was very entertaining.

See the film for an entertaining romp with a glint of American commentary that is enough to make COOKIE'S FORTUNE both important and delightful.

There were some hilarious moments -perhaps a bit unexpected- like the feathers flying from Cookie's pillow when she does the deed; the District Attorney's (?

But that's not bad, and "Cookie's Fortune" is a very enjoyable movie.

I found Cookie's Fortune to be rather slow moving.

Expected a comedy, so the slow and meandering beginning threw me off.

America's most purely enjoyable film director, Robert Altman, is at his epitome in this year's "Cookie's Fortune," a sunny comedy about the goings-on of a small town when an old lady commits suicide to be with her husband.

With so much stale air pumped into it to extend its viewing time, it's the kind of movie you want to fast-forward through to the end, but then find the end, if there IS one, is confusing.

The film is at its most enjoyable near the end, as we watch, with undisguised glee, the ironic hand of fate inexorably closing in on this despicable comic villainess.

I mean, even my writing this comment is a useless waste of time.

Many of the jokes are luke warm, the situations contrived, and none of the characters are sympathetic.

This film starts off at a slow pace.

The writing varies, too, from warm to comic to contrived.

Witty and charming, well worth watching.

Charles Dutton has a very cliché role: he is ultra-kind, pure goodness and is intellectually superior to just about everyone - without feeling that way.

He is often accused of being misanthropic and patronising, but he understands his characters, pinpoints them through seemingly aimless and banal dialogue and obsessions.

And where old racial boundaries and still slow to fall.

All this is preparatory to discussing Altman's latest film, `Cookie's Fortune,' a generally entertaining, offbeat comedy that again falls far short of greatness.

"Cookie's Fortune" is an extremely dire film up until the murder takes place (a rather long while, may I point out), but from there on it is pretty entertaining.

Robert Altman has assembled a perfect cast, as usual, to tell a slow-moving tale of denizens of a sleepy southern town.

The irony is that their films are often more interesting and engaging than Altman's own.

The photography is splendidly atmospheric, the mood both silly and affectionate, the characters compelling.

An unexpectedly enjoyable and underrated film .

While this movie's finest moments could be described, with slight exaggeration, as amusing, its weaker moments are dull, confusing, contrived, and arbitrary.

When filmmakers portray the American South, cliche reigns supreme.


If my summary doesn't say it all, well, it was slow.