Saturday, May 23, 2009

An Armadillo Cake?!?

Clairee: Where’s the other one you were talking about? “Cuppa, Cuppa, Cuppa.”
Truvy: That’s simple. You don’t need to write that down. That’s a cup of flour, a cup of sugar, a cup of fruit cocktail with the juice. Then you mix and bake at 350 until gold and bubbly.
Clairee: Sounds awfully rich.
Truvy: It is. So I serve it over ice cream to cut the sweetness.


Shelby: Wedding cake in the dining room and the groom’s cake … hidden in the carport?
M’Lynn: Shelby and I, we agree on one thing.
Shelby and M’Lynn: The groom’s cake.
Shelby: It’s awful. It’s in the shape of a giant armadillo.
Truvy: An armadillo? You’re joking, right?
Shelby: No, Jackson wanted a cake in the shape of an armadillo. He’s got an aunt that makes them.
Clairee: It’s unusual.
M’Lynn: It’s repulsive. It’s got gray icing. I can’t even begin to think how you’d make gray icing.
Shelby: Worse, the cake part is red velvet cake. Blood red. People are gonna be hacking into this poor animal that looks like it’s bleeding to death.

Known much more for its catty Southern repartee than its Southern food, Steel Magnolias brings together a host of superb actresses to depict the strength and resilience of women who face life’s inevitable uncertainty, loss, and death. The film does include a famously funny “food” scene, in which the bride’s father (Skerritt) requests a slice of the groom’s cake, a red velvet concoction shaped like an armadillo, from his sworn enemy and neighbor (MacLaine). Without a word, she slices off the tail and butt of the armadillo and plops it on his plate—to which he responds poker-faced, “Nothing like a good piece of ass.”

Drum: Ouiser, can we call a truce long enough for me to get a piece of cake?
(Ouiser cuts off the tail and butt of the armadillo cake and plops it on Drum’s plate.)
Drum: Thanks, Ouiser. Nothing like a good piece of ass.

Ouiser: Yes, Annelle, I pray! Well, I do! There, I said it, I hope you're satisfied.
Annelle: I suspected this all along!
Ouiser: Oh! Well don't you expect me to come to one of your churches or one of those tent-revivals with all those Bible-beaters doin' God-only-knows-what! They'd probably make me eat a live chicken!
Annelle: Not on your first visit!
Clairee: Very good, Annelle! Spoken like a true smart-ass!

Fun Facts: The film is set in the fictional town of Chinquapin in Chinquapin Parish, Louisiana. The word chinquapin is the name of both a fish and a variety of oak tree. Coincidentally, the real town and parish of Natchitoches, where the movie was filmed, are named after the Naktosh Native Americans, and naktosh means “those who eat chinquapin.”

Released 1989
Directed by Herbert Ross
Written (play and screenplay) by Robert Harling

Starring Sally Field as M’Lynn Eatenton, Dolly Parton as Truvy Jones, Shirley MacLaine as Ouiser Boudreaux, Daryl Hannah as Annelle Dupuy Desoto, Olympia Dukakis as Clairee Belcher, Julia Roberts as Shelby Eatenton Latcherie, Tom Skerritt as Drum Eatenton, Sam Shepard as Spud Jones, and Dylan McDermott as Jackson Latcherie
Awards: 1990 Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture (Julia Roberts); 1990 People’s Choice Award for Favorite Dramatic Motion Picture (tie with Batman)

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