“Forgotten Hollywood”- 21st Century 50 Fav Films (#42, #41)…

Posted on June 3, 2021 by raideoman1 | No Comments

Manny P. here…

“`The countdown of my fifty favorite movies continues. Let me recap the previous selections:


“`My next two choices are just as special…


~ #42 – JO JO RABBIT (2019)

“`Cinema is rich with celluloid that examines how ordinary citizens survived a war along the homefront. Mrs. Miniver and Hope and Glory come to mind. Jo Jo Rabbit illuminates the negative effects of belonging to Hitler’s Youth during World War II. This assignment offers a comedic portrait of the dictator, much like Charlie Chaplin’s expose in  The Great Dictator, and the many contributions made by Mel Brooks throughout his career.

“`The movie analyzes the dangers of propaganda to those who blindly abide by it, especially children. There is an Anne Frank-esque character (Elsa), whose moral fiber and individualism finds her at odds with fascism, vulnerable to punishment, and ultimately, an essential reason Jo Jo ultimately rejects Nazi propaganda. The production walks a fine line between satire and allegory. The surprise was that funding was available for a subject matter considered taboo.

“`JoJo Rabbit received five Academy Award nods and took home an Oscar for Best Adapted Screenplay. Scarlett Johansson, Rebel Wilson, and Sam Rockwell head up an eclectic cast. In fact, Rockwell appears in more flicks (4) than any other actor in my countdown.

“`Jojo Rabbit is having an impact on the teachings of the Holocaust. On December 19, 2019, the USC Shoah Foundation announced it was working together with Searchlight Pictures to develop a classroom curriculum based on the depiction of Nazism in cinema.  Jo Jo Rabbit is cited as the catalyst for this educational offering.


~ #41 – GREEN BOOK (2018)

“`The first of SIX Oscar-winning Best Pictures on my film list remains the most controversial. Pundits called the 2018 winner a bland offering. The critical darlings were The Favorite and Roma; the people’s choice were Black Panther and Bohemian Rhapsody. I argue Green Book is a worthy production created by Peter Farrelly, best known for his sophomoric work:  Dumb and Dumber, Kingpin, and There’s Something About Mary.

“`The flick is based on the true story of a 1960s concert tour of the Deep South by classical and jazz pianist Don Shirley and bouncer Frank Tony Lip Vallelonga, who served as Shirley’s driver and bodyguard.  Audio recording heard in the documentary, Lost Bohemia, features interviews with Shirley and Vallelonga confirming that they had a close friendship. Both died within three months of each other in 2013.  The motion picture earned five Academy Award nominations and collected three Oscars, the other two for Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor (Mahershala Ali). Viggo Mortensen heads the talented cast.

“`The title of the movie refers to  The Negro Motorist Green Book, a publication known as the bible of Black travel during Jim Crow. It was published by New York City mailman Victor Hugo Green for thirty years, when open legally prescribed discrimination against African Americans and other people of color was widespread. Right after passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which outlawed racial discrimination that made the Green Book necessary, publication ceased.

“`This production has been criticized for advancing a white savior narrative that perpetuates stereotypes. The Help was similarly castigated. In an interview, Farrelly addressed the issue by suggesting that  the screenplay earnestly tried to equally depict common ground between the characters. Historically, Green Book brings to light the fabulous classical and jazz career of Don Shirley. His story remains fascinating and bold.

Until next time>                               “never forget”

This entry was posted on Thursday, June 3rd, 2021 at 10:03 pm and is filed under Blog by Manny Pacheco. You can follow any comments to this post through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Bookmark this post:
Digg Del.icio.us Reddit Furl Google Bookmarks StumbleUpon Windows Live Technorati Yahoo MyWeb

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.