The Toronto International Film Festival has had some luck at determining future Academy Award winners for Best Film. Five of the festival’s previous winners of the award have gone on to win the top prize at the Oscars. Those five are Slumdog Millionaire, The King’s Speech, 12 Years A Slave, American Beauty and Chariots Of Fire. Winners La La Land and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri did go on to be nominated for Best Film. Therefore, the buzz and spotlight have fallen upon this year’s People’s Choice Award winner, Green Book.
Starring Viggo Mortensen and Mahershala Ali, Green Book tells the story of a hired “tough guy” (Mortensen) who is tasked with chauffeuring and providing security for legendary multilingual composer-musician Don Shirley (Ali). Labeled as comedy-drama, Green Book is co-written and directed by Peter Farrelly, who takes a much different path in this film from his past projects like Dumb & Dumber and There’s Something About Mary. The success at TIFF shows that Farrelly is a versatile filmmaker, seeming to follow in the footsteps of some other comedy-turned-drama filmmakers, like Adam McKay, the man behind Step Brothers and Anchorman who went on to win an Oscar for his screenplay The Big Short.
In review for the film published in Variety, Peter Debruge commended Mortensen and Ali on giving “terrific performances”. He went on to say that the story is “unique, yet it goes pretty much exactly the way you might expect, with one huge twist: The credits read “Directed by Peter Farrelly.” If Green Book goes the route of precious TIFF People’s Choice Award winners, maybe this will be the film Farrelly is remembered for.
Green Book hits theaters on November 21st.
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