I walked in with not the highest expectations for “Green Book.” I left feeling positive though. “Green Book” is definitely one of my favorite films of the year. Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali both deliver knockout performances. It is funny, charming, and will make viewers cry. I will say director Peter Farrelly has been stepping up his game with his directing, because “Green Book” was a masterpiece.
Tony Lip (Mortensen) is an Italian-American bouncer that does his job at a night club. However, the night club is going into renovations and this leaves Lip out of the job and he is desperate to find work support his kids and his wife. Lip finds an offer to be a driver for a wealthy pianist named Don Shirley (Ali) who is African-American. Shirley hires Lip to drive him on his concert tour across the states in the Deep South. Once Lip accepts the job, he realizes the types of problems in his society and Shirley’s society have upon them. Lip and Shirley’s attitudes towards each other are challenged, they disagree about life, politics, and responsibilities. Those conflicts, however, start to bring them close together as friends. They slowly begin to realize they both are talented in different areas but can relate to one another. That aspect will change their lives.
This movie brought me to realize how friends are made, and what we respect about our friends. The connections between Mortensen and Ali is quite enthralling, where it will encourage its audience to not envy other people’s talents. I find the main message of the movie is to think to about what talents people have to offer the world. For Lip, it is being humorous and charming, and for Shirley it is being a skillful pianist. Both are talented among so many levels and they start to respect that about one another. That is why I love “Green Book” it encourages people to be positive and supportive.
Peter Farrelly is talented at making movies about friendship when it comes to comedy. After directing the “Dumb and Dumber” movies, and many other films, they have geared on friendships, but in a comedic way. This is the first film by Farrelly that is a serious film (still gearing on friendship though).
Also, in terms of Mortensen’s performance, I had no idea Mortensen could act the way he did in “Green Book.” I am so use to seeing Mortensen playing intense and violent characeters in a majority of his movies, but he can definitely play someone humorous. He went from playing the hero Aragorn from “The Lord of the Rings” series to playing the laid-back and hysterical Italian man in “Green Book.”
I will say, I was impressed with “Green Book.” I really hope that the director continues to make Oscar-worthy movies like this. This one is definitely one I will remember for a long time. Four stars.