The Green Book – Wow!
I wonder if the Motion Picture Academy of Arts and Sciences ever considered awarding the Oscar for Best Actor to co-recipients?
If not, they might reconsider it this year when they make their annual choice.
The Green Book co-stars, Mahershala Ali and Viggo Mortensen, are outstanding in “reincarnating” African-American classical pianist, Don Shirley, and Tony Vallelonga, a white Italian-American bouncer.
I say “reincarnating” since this is the true story of their “employer-employee” relationship that ultimately leads to a life long friendship.
The Green Book is the abbreviated form of “The Negro Motorist Green Book”- a mid 20th century guidebook for African-American roadtrippers. It was written by Victor Hugo Green.
Tony is a bouncer at the Copacabana restaurant. When the Copa closes for renovations, he needs a new job to support his family. Someone suggests he apply to be famed pianist, Don Shirley’s, driver.
Tony is unaware that Shirley is black, and his first tendency is to turn the job down when offered. Shirley, however, is insistent and makes it impossible to turn his back on the opportunity.
The film highlights their concert tour throughout the deep South. They both face prejudicial situations, but they manage to overcome these conflicts while drawing closer together as friends.
Shirley manages to survive as a musician in the South by forsaking his beloved classical style for the more acceptable jazz format. His stylistic music is featured throughout the film.
If you like great acting, good music, and a “feel good” ending, don’t miss The Green Book.