Matthew Lickona noon, April 29
Extended hen party for six Suthunnuhs who either patronize or work at a hair parlor called Truvy's Beauty Spot -- that's the social link between them. One-liners are passed around the group like canapés, and each of the top-line actresses (Shirley MacLaine, Sally Field, Julia Roberts, Dolly Parton, Daryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis) lays it on extremely thick -- and not just their accents (Dukakis's in fact is pretty patchy, letting her East Coast frequently peek through). Parton manages to be the least actressy about it, and Sally Field does well with the darker moments. But, as brutal a piece of audience leash-tugging as this is, she is always called upon to ruin such moments before long. Adapted by Robert Harling from his own play; directed by Herbert Ross. 1989.