Hey Boo: Harper Lee and "To Kill a Mockingbird"

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Released 2011

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Released:
2011
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Hey, Boo: Harper Lee and "To Kill a Mockingbird" is a 2011 documentary directed by Mary McDonagh Murphy and narrated by Bob Mayer. The documentary focuses on the 1960 classic novel, "To Kill a Mockingbird," which is the only published work by author Harper Lee. Lee has refused to speak to the press since 1964 and has not written any more books, which only deepens the mythos surrounding her first and last novel. "To Kill a Mockingbird" tells the story of young Scout Finch and her progressive lawyer father, Atticus Finch. When a local African-American man goes on trial for a crime he apparently did not commit, racial tensions burn hot in a small Southern town and Scout has to learn important lessons about justice and acceptance. The documentary features interviews with several celebrities and writers, including Oprah Winfrey, Roseanne Cash, Wally Lamb and Tom Brokaw. Murphy attempts to piece together details of Lee's life and explain why she wrote the novel, why it has become so enduringly popular and why Lee will probably never write again.moreless

Metacritic Score

  • 80

    Los Angeles Times Kenneth Turan

    Though it's more than a little awestruck and feels padded even at 82 minutes, the story it tells remains completely fascinating

  • 70

    The New York Times Neil Genzlinger

    Eventually, though, Hey, Boo settles into a pleasant rhythm. It gives the fascinating history of how the book came to be.

  • 40

    Variety Ronnie Scheib

    An unremarkable documentary about Harper Lee and her single literary masterwork, Hey, Boo features what the French call a "structuring absence," that of Lee herself.

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    Categories

    Arts, Documentary

    Themes

    Literature & Writing, History, Women, Art & Artists