Green Book has been condemned, in certain circles, as if it were a racially stodgy and unenlightened embarrassment — the Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner of 2018 awards bait. It has been called a white-savior movie — though, in fact, it is not. (The two characters save one another, which is a very different thing.) It’s been condemned for being an overly tidy fable that takes refuge in the ‘safe’ world of the past.

“But really, what is the movie’s crime? It’s based on a true story, which it tells with considerable depth. It’s not trying to make a grand statement about race except for the idea that white people and black people, to the extent that their backgrounds and experiences separate them, should try to understand each other better. Sorry, but I must have missed the place where that became a reactionary message.” — from Owen Gleiberman‘s “Is Green Book Woke Enough? Does It Need to Be?,” posted on 11.22.18.

I don’t know how successful the attempted torpedo campaign by the wokers and their journalistic supporters will be in the end, but the viciousness of the Green Book volleys hasn’t been matched since the “don’t vote for Zero Dark Thirty because it endorses torture” campaign of 2012 and early ’13, which I called “The Ugliest Takedown in Oscar History.”