17.5 C
Byron Shire
September 28, 2021

Cinema Review: Green Book

Latest News

The circular economy in action

Life Cykel is a versatile, forward thinking and high ethos company that focuses on harnessing the circular economy and the great potential that mushrooms possess to create quality products for human, and planetary, health.

Other News

Kingscliff and Casuarina among new venues of concern

Northern NSW Local Health District has been notified of a number of new venues of concern associated with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the region. There have also been positive detection of COVID fragments at Ballina and Wardell sewage treatment plants.

Byron Shire Councillors get behind vaccination push

Public buildings such as the Mullumbimby Civic Hall could become mass COVID-19 vaccination centres, under a proposal put forward by Byron Council last week.

Getting annoyed with NSW Farmers naming ‘rights’

The Annoying Vegan has become more annoyed today with what they see as the NSW Farmers getting on their high horse about the use of the words ‘meat’ and ‘milk’.

NSW ‘Crisis Cabinet’ failed in crisis

As the Northern Rivers goes back into lockdown once again as a result of people coming to the area from Sydney it has been revealed that the ‘Crisis Cabinet’ failed to meet during key crisis points.

A matter of choice

I have chosen to receive a vaccination. Others have chosen not to. Unless we are living in some totalitarian state, that...

Ballina mayor hopeful loses bid for independent water science team a second time

Cr Cadwallader's second version of the motion came with an extra suggestion referring directly to the dumped option of a new hinterland dam in Dunoon.

by  Charles Boyle

Set in the US in 1962, Green Book is the true story of black piano virtuoso Dr Don Shirley, who hires tough New York Italian nightclub bouncer Tony Lip (aka Vallelonga) to drive and protect him on a concert tour of the southern states. It’s a deceptively simple premise, the titular Green Book being a guidebook for black travellers to find motels and restaurants that would serve them in the racially divided Deep South. Subtle, provocative, and deeply insightful, this is a thoughtful movie for grown-ups. Part Odd Couple, part road movie, this is one of the finest pictures to come out of the US in recent years.

Essentially a two-hander with outstanding performances from Viggo Mortensen as Tony Lip and Mahershala Ali as pianist Dr Don Shirley, the picture is also blessed with an excellent supporting cast: the delightful Linda Cardellini (The Founder, Scooby Doo) as Tony’s wife Delores, Dimiter Marinov (who really does play the cello), and Sebastian Maniscalo et al magnify the nuances of a powerfully understated screenplay into a mesmerising exploration of race and identity.

The screenplay was co-written by the real Tony Lip’s son Nick Vallelonga – who also appears in the film, as do several other members of the Vallelonga clan. Meticulous direction by veteran Peter Farrely (Dumb & Dumber, There’s Something About Mary) brings masterful understatement to the narrative while production legends George Lucas (Dreamworks) and Steven Spielberg (Amblin Partners), lend serious cred to its pedigree.

The other great element to this film is music – from Chopin to early sixties Motown to delta blues, the soundtrack is brilliant. While there are always problems with technical expertise when an actor plays a great musician, the application of invisible computer graphics allows the virtuoso hands of musical director Kris Bowers’s stand-in to effortlessly play the piano for Mahershala Ali.

Green Book cost $23 million and has already pulled $109 million at the global box office and has won a Best Picture award at the Golden Globes and has been nominated for five Oscars.

Green Book will stay with you for days, and warrants a second viewing. It reminds us that great American artists still exist and US culture is not entirely morally corrupt. Short on schmalz, gratuitous sex and violence, but big on excellent performance and subtle humour, there is nothing not to like about this feelgood movie, and plenty to write home about. Go see it.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

1 COMMENT

  1. Agree with this great, positive review. Viggo Mortensen at his best! So many levels of interest to enjoy and ponder. See it twice to catch all the subtleties and great soundtrack. A visual delight as well.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Entertainment in the Byron Shire for the week beginning 29 September, 2021

Byron Writers Festival co-presents a special online event with acclaimed author Jonathan Franzen. 

Organic local Koala Tea

Koala Tea has won several awards over the years and has been inducted into the ACO Organic Hall of Fame.

Organic Forrest

Pioneers of the organic food movement, David Forrest and Sue Mangan have been farming in Federal since 1978.

A smoothie operator

Mullum, the town with everything, now has its own new specialty smoothie bar...