Green Book

Coming to Cinemas 24 January 2019

Inspired by a true friendship.

Golden Globe-winning road comedy-drama with Viggo Mortensen as an Italian-American bouncer from the Bronx hired to drive a world-class concert pianist (Moonlight's Oscar-winning Mahershala Ali, who also picked up a Globe in this picture) on a tour across the 1960s American South.

Confronted with racism and danger along the way, they must set aside their differences while relying on "The Green Book" to guide them to the few establishments that were then safe for African-Americans. Directed by Peter Farrelly (There's Something About Mary).

Trailers

Awards

Best Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy, Performance (Mahershala Ali) & Screenplay, Golden Globes 2019; Grosch People's Choice Award (Farrelly), Toronto International Film Festival 2018

Directed by

  • Peter Farrelly('Dumb and Dumber', 'There's Something About Mary', 'Dumb and Dumber To')

Comedy, Drama

130mins

Rating: M Offensive language

USA

Aaron-Yap2

Aaron Yap

flicks

It’s 2019, and cinematic portrayals of racism, ideally, need to have progressed beyond the retrograde, broadly digestible lessons of Green Book. Following 2018's necessary incendiary punch of BlacKkKlansman and 2017's Get Out, the heart-warming, Oscar-bait packaging of Peter Farrelly’s film—based on a true story—almost smacks of fantasy.

That’s why I find myself surprised to have enjoyed this as much as I did, even recognising its approach to socially conscious storytelling has led at least one reviewer to describe it as the origin story of “how that racist guy who says ‘I’m not racist, I have a black friend’ met his black friend.”

Green Book is basically In The Heat of the Night repurposed as a Christmas stocking stuffer, decked out in cornball odd-couple, tit-for-tat laughs. The film entertains sufficiently on that level. As a close study of race politics, it’s idealised, overly glossy and goofy as all get out.

It doesn’t hurt that Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali are an infectiously hammy hoot together. They bring some heft to a screenplay that’s primarily centred around contrasting buddy schtick: Mortensen’s Tony Lip, a Bronx-raised, burly nightclub bouncer re-examines his bigoted attitudes as he goes on the road in the Jim Crow-era South, chauffeuring black Steinway-pounding classical virtuoso Don Shirley (Ali), who in turn, comes to terms with the difficulties posed by his class status.

Yes, Green Book is far from a complicated act. But its cartoonish sincerity and beaming optimism make it an agreeable two-hour reprieve from a more serious, complex conversation—one that needs to start again immediately after the credits have rolled.

Hollywood Reporter

press

Distinctive and amusing turns by Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali make Peter Farrelly's first solo feature outing a lively and likable diversion.

The Guardian

press

There's clearly a more nuanced drama to be made from this story but given the scale, there's still a lot here to praise.

Variety (USA)

press

Mortensen's role may be the showier of the two, but Ali is a marvel to watch in his musical performances.

Los Angeles Times

press

"Green Book" is a savvy and super effective piece of popular entertainment.

Rolling Stone

press

Thanks to the dream team of Mortensen and Ali, both giving Oscar calibre performances, audiences will be rightly cheering this hilarious and heartfelt true story of a black musician and his racist driver on a 1960's tour of the Deep South.

New York Times

press

There's not much here you haven't seen before, and very little that can't be described as crude, obvious and borderline offensive, even as it tries to be uplifting and affirmative.

Vulture

press

The acting is better than the dialogue, which is better than the plotting. And I have to confess that in the current, insanely divisive political climate, I enjoyed Green Book's spoon-feeding mightily.

Stuff.co.nz (Graeme Tuckett)

press

Producer and co-writer Nick Vallelonga – Tony's son – must be justifiably proud of getting his how-Dad-learned-to-stop-being-racist fable to the screen. But the greater evil of institutional and generational racism goes mostly ignored and unexamined.

loved it

i really loved this films freshness about the trip of the black , negro american , and the italian american ,side by side as they go down south in the 1960s. it was a very honest and heart warming movie .with two very good and popular stars playing the leading roles . they make the film .


Totally Awards-Worthy!

For all the hype and fanfare that surrounded McKay's Vice, Green Book slides into the awards race modestly as the most entertaining race film of the last 5 years. More humourous than Spike Lee's latest, with solid performances from a robust Mortensen and a layered Ali, Green Book delivers laughs, action, music and a wallop of deep south scenery that sends it into the realm of greatness. Mortensen's dedication to the role of brutish Tony Lipp outshines the prosthetic work and grumbling Bale churned out as Dick Cheney, while Ali's charm and charisma as a talented musician, who's forced to re-evaluate his stoicism, further amplifies the anticipation surrounding his turn in True Detective. Finally an award-winning film that actually entertains instead of purposing itself as high art.


Preview Screening on Christmas Eve

This is a lovely film and although it doesn't delve too far deep into the key issues it has a supremely uplifting feeling about it. The characterisation (and portrayal) of Tony Vallelonga is ace. Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali are great as is Linda Cardellini who flies under the radar. No pass on the Bechdel test because the focal point is two men. Sure to be a classic Christmas movie (for TV rotation).