As you might be aware, it’s officially Oscar season with the spotlight firmly on the various nominated movies and actors. One of the favourites this year is Green Book with one of our recent faves, Mahershala Ali, headlining it. It seems everything the guy is involved in just works and most of the time goes on to be a hit, recent examples of this playing out come in the form of Moonlight, True Detective (one of our strong faves currently), Hidden Figures, The Hunger Games…the list goes on.
In the case of our focus today, Green Book, we were treated to Ster Kinekor’s annual Oscar themed evening with this year’s offering not disappointing (as usual) and included a great spectacle all summed up perfectly with the screening of the movie. We sure do feel special during these types of evenings and this year wasn’t any different.
Anyway, enough of that and onto the business at hand and what you came here for. Green Book is one of those unassuming movies with the title thereof also not inspiring too much excitement. But in Mahershala Ali the movie definitely has an actor who can get many to sit up and notice, that’s exactly what happened to us. When you go further and dig deeper into it, including watching the trailer then you see why it has the makings of a special movie. Factor in all the Oscar attention it has then it becomes clear that this is worth checking out.
Cast – Viggo Mortensen, Mahershala Ali & Linda Cardellini
Director – Peter Farrelly
Genre – Drama/Comedy-drama
Running Time – 2h 10m
When Tony Lip (Mortensen), a bouncer from an Italian-American neighbourhood in the Bronx, is hired to drive Dr. Don Shirley (Ali), a world-class Black pianist, on a concert tour from Manhattan to the Deep South, they must rely on “The Green Book” to guide them to the few establishments that were then safe for African-Americans. Confronted with racism, danger-as well as unexpected humanity and humour-they are forced to set aside differences to survive and thrive on the journey of a lifetime.
A charming and heart-warming offering, Green book is one movie that’s hard not to like. Very simple in its approach with an equally fairly easy story-line that is full of rich anecdotes to take coming in the form of friendship, respect, humility and humour. Its also based on a true story that highlights the harsh realities centred around extreme racism and how its effects and practice just didn’t make sense…in more ways than one we could actually say that it still doesn’t today.
Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali drive the story throughout with numerous ups and downs experienced in their partnership which later develops into a great friendship. It’s clear why it’s one of the front runners at this year’s Oscars. We’ve already talked about Ali who delivers an impeccable performance in his role as the legendary Dr. Don Shirley but the most surprising performance came from Viggo Mortensen who came through with a much stronger performance, you cannot help but like his character as Tony Lip…a tough Italian who is as authentic as they come, grew up in the streets of The Bronx (New York) and doesn’t comprise who he is for anyone.
Green Book is a great movie that doesn’t seek to force anything. It instead tells a simple story full of great lessons and performances mainly driven by two outstanding actors. It definitely is one of our faves this year already and will no doubt last long in the memory. Heart-warming, humorous and just plain likeable, Green Book gets an 8 out of 10 rating from us. It officially hits Nouveau cinemas nationwide on the 14th February, do yourself a favour and go see it!
Our thanks to Ster Kinekor for the great #OskarBuzz themed evening.