Aussie Peter Weir’s 1990 romantic comedy ‘Green Card’ still holds up well today. It is about what ensues when the lives of two very different people are thrown together.
In ‘Green Card’ Frenchman George and American Bronte agree to a marriage of convenience for practical reasons. George has been offered a great job in the states but he needs a work permit, a Green Card. If he is married he will automatically be eligible for a permit. Bronte, a keen gardener, has found the perfect flat with its own greenhouse, but it is only available to married couples. Barely knowing each other George and Bronte agree to live together and get married- platonically- and their only hurdle is the local immigration department.
Ok, that’s enough of a boring plot description! What’s ‘Green Card’ like?! Here are some prompts.
Think romance…this film has a soft, mushy heart. It has one of the most stirring finishes in cinema, featuring one of those great enigmatic endings.
Think the comedy of ‘odd couple’ dynamics. Bronte is conservative, reserved, arch. George is a provocateur, and often deliberately outrageous, especially to Bronte’s far too straight and try hard boyfriend! There are some hilarious scenes such as when George does a little bit of improvising on the piano at a one of Bronte’s friends parties’, and Bronte hides her face in her hands in embarrassment.
Think suspense and real involvement with the main characters. The crunch scenes when George and Bronte have their big interview with immigration, and have to improvise like hell and hope for the best.
Summing up, to use an analogy, ‘Green Card’ felt like a favourite winter jacket that fitted just right.