By Tom Keogh
One of the touchstone movies of the Awesome80s, Tootsie stars
Dustin Hoffman as an out-of-work actor who disguises himself as a dowdy,
middle-aged woman to get a part on a hit soap opera. The scheme works, but
while he/she keeps up the charade, Hoffman's character comes to see life
through the eyes of the opposite sex. The script by Larry Gelbart (with
Murray Schisgal) is a winner, and director Sydney Pollack brings taut
proficiency to the comedy and sensitivity to the relationship nuances that
emerge from Hoffman's drag act. Great supporting work from Teri Garr,
Dabney Coleman, Charles Durning, Bill Murray, and pre-stardom Geena Davis.
But the film finally belongs to Hoffman, who seems to connect with the
character at a very deep and abiding level.
Tootsie received an Academy Award
for Supporting Actress (Jessica Lange) and was nominated for Best Picture
(Sydney Pollack - Producer, Dick Richards - Producer), Actor (Dustin
Hoffman), Supporting Actress (Teri Garr), Directing (Sydney Pollack),
Writing (Best Screenplay written directly for the screen; Larry Gelbart,
Murray Schisgal, Don McGuire), Cinematography (Owen Roizman), Film Editing
(Fredric Steinkamp, William Steinkamp), Music Best Song (Dave Grusin -
Music, Alan Bergman - Lyrics, Marilyn Bergman - Lyrics), and for Sound
(Arthur Piantadosi, Les Fresholtz, Dick Alexander, Les Lazarowitz).