Above: Movie Spoilers
What are we going to do? Ignore the story? I take it the writer of this Salon article is liberal, but he’s one of those post-liberals, whatever that means.
It’s safe to surmise that only a couple of these titles will ever be seen by the majority of filmgoers. But even these foment smarter, more thoughtful conversations about prejudice and inequality than “Green Book.” “Black Panther,” by far the most commercially successful of the nominees listed here, takes on these themes in a way that honors the thorniness of the topic while mesmerizing the audience.
In the simplest terms it asks what an African country might have achieved had colonialism never altered its course, and what responsibility the rulers of such a nation would have to the oppressed Black people around the world.
That is a conversation about structural injustice clothed in a first-rate superhero action film.
“Black Panther” and “BlacKkKlansman” also are up for Best Motion Picture awards thanks to the machines behind them – the former benefiting from the Marvel halo effect, the latter from Spike Lee’s reputation in the industry. Fellow category nominee “Beale Street” is from Oscar-winning “Moonlight” writer and director Barry Jenkins; awards voters tend to favor previous winners.
Haven’t seen Black Panther. BlackkKlansman sucked! This was the worst movie Spike Lee ever made.
Movie Spoiler - The Green Book - Quote from <em>Salon.com</em>
He’s a loving family man held in high regard in his neighborhood. He’s also a guy who tosses a pair of drinking glasses into the trash after his wife uses them to serve a drink to the two Black workmen.
Seeing Tony in his fullness, the good and the bad, helps us to appreciate how quickly his bigotry dissolves in the face of “real” racism, the kind perpetuated South of the Mason-Dixon line. Life up North can’t be too bad for Blacks if men like Don can live like kings while hard-working schlubs like Tony subject themselves to ridiculous hot dog eating contests just to get by, the film suggests.
When Tony isn’t swooping in to save Don from the violent Southern supremacists lurking in the Whites-only establishments into which Don — a man with multiple doctorate degrees, mind you — haplessly wanders, he’s exposing him to the joys of eating fried chicken.
It’s his people’s cuisine, Tony insists. This happens after Tony exposes Don to Little Richard and Aretha Franklin, which the film posits professional musician Don hears for the very first time thanks to his driver, racist-but-in-a-Northern-way Tony.
The literal and metaphorical layers here — Black man in the backseat, White guy at the wheel — are simply stunning. Such dynamics are catnip for White audiences uncomfortable talking about racism, because “Green Book” presents violent manifestations of racial animus as an unfortunate element of a distant past.
And racial harmony can be as easily attainable as refraining from calling groups of people “eggplants” and “jungle bunnies” and sharing a bucket of KFC with a fancy Black man.[collapse]
Well, sorry post-liberal SJW’s, but that’s just the way life was and people were back then. Now why can’t that be portrayed in a film without snarky comments about it being sentimental, condescending, cheesy crap?