Miss Firecracker - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Miss Firecracker Reviews

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September 29, 2007
Darn good. A fave for sure.
September 17, 2007
Fine performances from a good cast, especially Alfre Woodard. Holly Hunter is great as well. Very nicely written slice of Southern life. Very good score, the direction is very well thought out and detailed.
½ September 4, 2007
I agree with Jim Griffith
September 3, 2007
The all time best ever film in the world ever you know
August 31, 2007
I loved this movie for its quirkiness and for Tim Robbins' role.
August 9, 2007
It is rare to find a movie where all its parts-casting, script, scenic design, score-come together in one cohesive, organic whole but when they do, the results are unforgettable magic. Director Thomas Schlamme's (who has worked mostly in television) Miss Firecracker, though not a masterpiece, is an excellent example of a small film where everything works flawlessly. It's a shame that this film was a bomb on release and was never able to capture a wider audience since then. It is definitely worth a watch.

The screenplay is an adaptation by Beth Henley-best known for the play Crimes of the Heart- of her own 1984 stage play, The Miss Firecracker Contest. The action takes place in a small Mississippi town over a period of several weeks and focuses on the plain jane Carnelle William's (Holly Hunter) aspirations to win a local beauty contest that her older cousin Elaine Rutledge (Mary Steenburgen) - the town beauty-won years before. Elaine is coming back to town and Carnelle has asked her to bring the red dress she wore the night she won the Miss Firecracker Contest (Carnelle does not have a dress of her own). The story unfolds from there up to the day and night of the actual contest. The ensemble cast is filled out by Carnelle's ne'er do well brother, Delmount (Tim Robbins), Carnelle's new friend (and last minute dress maker) Popeye Jackson (Alfre Woodard) and Carnelle's only beau, the carny Mac Sam (Scott Glenn) who has breezed back into town with the carnival which hosts the annual Miss Firecracker contest. Carnelle is desperate to win the contest this year. She sees it as her only hope of escaping the small town and making her way in the bigger world beyond Mississippi.

Mary Steenburgen's portrayal of the older, vain, "world weary" cousin, though bordering sometimes on camp, is nevertheless a comic delight, Alfre Woodward almost steals the movie with her quirky and awkward Popeye, Robbin's gives a respectable performance as Carnelle's troubled sibling but it is Holly Hunter's tour de force as Carnelle that gives the film its heart. You ache for her as her need to win becomes more frenetic, more chaotic. By the day of the contest, we are rooting for her to win. I won't spoil it but the outcome is so amazing in its simplicity and grace that I find myself in tears every time.

Very few movies establish from the start, a strong sense of place that carries through to the final credits. I felt so at home in the locations of this film (the old victorian home of Carnelle and Delmount's deceased aunt (they are orphans), the town itself, the carnival... that by the end of the movie, I realized the setting of the film was an important character itself.

Carnelle's small Mississippi rural town is a place I now think of as mine. I visit it from time to time to check up on its imperfect, funny and decent residents. I urge you to make a first visit. It won't be your last.
July 21, 2007
Holly Hunter is superb in this adorable film.
June 22, 2007
THis movie makes my heart BURN!!!
½ June 20, 2007
a sweet, charming, quirky film with flawed characters who are intriguing and engaging. A nice little film.
½ June 12, 2007
If I could give this zero stars, I would. Possibly the worst movie I've ever seen. Don't expect a comedy as advertized, but rather a dark, strange drama about messed up relations.
½ June 10, 2007
Holly hunter is so good.
June 7, 2007
Oh so gentle and loving. Clean and beautiful. Funny and serious. Absolutely wonderful.
½ April 6, 2007
He makes my heart hot!
April 4, 2007
Cute movie - not grand but fun & with enough grit to it to keep it from being complete fluff & stuff. Sweet performance by Holly Hunter. Mary Steenburgen & Alfre Woodard & Tim Robbins - so a fine cast. And Tim Robbins was pretty durn hot in this one. Rainy day movie - but a good one.
March 11, 2007
See TRobbins scoopin up dead possums... lol. Beauty pageants & family, funny.
½ November 19, 2006
A wonderful film, and Holly Hunter is really good.
September 13, 2006
bet she goes off with a bang
½ August 15, 2006
I haven't seen it in a while, but my grandmother, Dot Nolan, is in one of the crowd scenes
June 14, 2006
a good chick flick with a funny, meaningful script
May 22, 2006
I had the Tim Robbins Role in the play. I love the play and the movie is pretty good too.
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