The Grass Harp. 1995. USA. Directed by Charles Matthau. Screenplay by Sterling Silliphant, Kirk Ellis, based on the novel by Truman Capote. With Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, Sissy Spacek. 35mm. 107 min.
After his mother dies, aspiring young writer Collin Fenwick (a stand-in for author Truman Capote) goes to live with his father’s cousins, the Talbo sisters: the harsh Verena and the compassionate, easygoing Dolly. When Dolly’s locally famous tonic concoction comes to the attention of Morris Ritz, a fast-talking city slicker passing through town, Verena implores Dolly to give her the tonic recipe, but the sister will not budge. Instead she heads for the family tree house, where she takes refuge with Collin and the family maid.