Hey, Boo: Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird A film by Mary McDonagh Murphy
82 minutes, color, English, 2011
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After more than half a century, To Kill a Mockingbird remains a beloved bestseller and quite possibly the most influential American novel of the 20th Century. Nearly one million copies are sold each year and the novel has been translated into more than forty languages. The film version, starring Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch, won a trio of Academy Awards.
Behind it all was a young Southern girl named Nelle Harper Lee, who once said that all she wanted to be is the Jane Austen of South Alabama. Hey, Boo explores Lee's life and unravels some of the mysteries surrounding her, including why she never published again.
Containing never-before-seen photos and letters and a rare interview with Lee's sister, Alice Finch Lee, the film also brings to light the context and history of the novel's setting in the Deep South and the social changes it inspired.
Tom Brokaw, Rosanne Cash, Wally Lamb, Anna Quindlen, Richard Russo, Scott Turow, Oprah Winfrey, Andrew Young and others reflect on the novel's power, influence, and popularity, and the many ways it has shaped their lives.
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"Completely fascinating!" - Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"An enlightened love letter to the novel." - Lynn Peisner, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"" - Joe Neumaier, New York Daily News
"Affecting ...Fascinating." - Neil Genzlinger, New York Times
"With no help from the elusive, reclusive author, who hasn't given an interview since 1964, filmmaker Murphy still amazingly manages to get to the heart of the book, why it affects people of all colors, religions, social backgrounds and degrees of education, and why it remains relevant today…Well worth seeing!" - Rex Reed, New York Observer
"Prove[s] that one of the great American novels has lasting power and might just inspire viewers to revisit their tattered copies… Murphy chose a most worthy subject!" - Stephanie Merry, Washington Post
"" - Lou Lumenick, New York Post
"Offers a much appreciated glimpse into the life and legacy of the beloved author… a fitting tribute to Nelle Harper Lee, an American treasure." - Jennifer Merin, About.com Documentaries
"Provides wonderful insights into the book’s social and literary importance as well as its author’s personality." - Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter
"Compelling … Hey, Boo celebrates a novel, celebrates an imagination and, ultimately, celebrates a defining piece of Americana. It's always nice to see a movie that values literature and literacy -- and this is one of the better ones." - Marshall Fine, Huffington Post
"Intelligent and intriguing, and timely, too." - Emanuel Levy, Cinema 24/7