Hey, Boo!

New documentary explores Harper Lee, 'To Kill a Mockingbird,' and the classic film

Mary Murphy's Hey, Boo: Harper Lee and ‘To Kill a Mockingbird,' which opens in limited theaters this week, is more celebration than investigation . . . and I'm perfectly fine with that.

Few works in the history of American literature are more universally beloved than Lee's bildungsroman. Add to the novel's immense popularity the fact Richard Mulligan's film adaptation consistently tops lists of fan favorites and the task of a documentarian covering this material is simultaneously daunting and alluring. Finding people willing to talk about what the book means to them is seldom a problem. Harnessing that enthusiasm to deepen the appreciation of the work about which every reader thinks he is an expert can be a difficult task indeed.

The key to Hey Boo's success lies in director Murphy's ability to balance critique and appreciation, providing both historical and biographical context – including insights into Lee's friendship with Truman Capote, and how that plays into the story and the film ...

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