Preface to this review before I get to the art itself: This movie is problematic in more ways than one. Not only does it act as though it solves racism by the end (by simply suggesting that people not be racist), it also uses the concept of the white savior (an ideal that everyone should research), which is definitely a move that should be disposed of. If you're willing to ignore that idealism (although you shouldn't), there's more than a few redeeming qualities to this movie.
Writing/Direction: Who would've thought that the guy who brought the world Dumb and Dumber could deliver such a deft touch? Peter Farrely (Farelly?) gives us a mushy feeling throughout the whole picture and lets us know he's got it under control. Given the fact that the two leads are in a car the whole time, I'm impressed. The writing, while claimed inaccurate by Don Shirley's family, is definitely impressive in that it uses humor in a well-timed way. I will admit that at the end, I did have a warm feeling inside.
Performances: Mahershala Ali has proven himself to be one of the greatest actors of our time with so few performances; his performance as Don Shirley truly is the heart of the movie and succeeds as such. Viggo Mortensen is the lead actor and can hold his own as well, from eating an entire pizza uncut to going through an impressive body transformation to showing off his ability to once again master an accent. Viggo and Mahershala's chemistry just makes everything better, so thank you for that. Everyone else in the cast was just fine, they clearly knew the callibur of actors they were working alongside and let them do their thing.
Other than that, it's a relatively basic movie. Yeah, there's some fancy music and some period-accurate production design, but it's just nothing special. That combined with the issues it has socially makes this an alright piece of filmmaking.
Opinion: This did not deserve best picture.
Green book is not revolutionary, nor is it entirely bad, but it certainly is funny through and through. (7/10)
1 out of 1 found this helpful