The Godfather (1972)
Critic Consensus: One of Hollywood's greatest critical and commercial successes, The Godfather gets everything right; not only did the movie transcend expectations, it established new benchmarks for American cinema.
Popularly viewed as one of the best American films ever made, the multi-generational crime saga The Godfather is a touchstone of cinema: one of the most widely imitated, quoted, and lampooned movies of all time. Marlon Brando and Al Pacino star as Vito Corleone and his youngest son, Michael, respectively. It is the late 1940s in New York and Corleone is, in the parlance of organized crime, a "godfather" or "don," the head of a Mafia family. Michael, a free thinker who defied his father by enlisting in the Marines to fight in World War II, has returned a captain and a war hero. Having long ago rejected the family business, Michael shows up at the wedding of his sister, Connie (Talia Shire), with his non-Italian girlfriend, Kay (Diane Keaton), who learns for the first time about the family "business." A few months later at Christmas time, the don barely survives being shot by gunmen in the employ of a drug-trafficking rival whose request for aid from the Corleones' political connections was rejected. After saving his father from a second assassination attempt, Michael persuades his hotheaded eldest brother, Sonny (James Caan), and family advisors Tom Hagen (Robert Duvall) and Sal Tessio (Abe Vigoda) that he should be the one to exact revenge on the men responsible. After murdering a corrupt police captain and the drug trafficker, Michael hides out in Sicily while a gang war erupts at home. Falling in love with a local girl, Michael marries her, but she is later slain by Corleone enemies in an attempt on Michael's life. Sonny is also butchered, having been betrayed by Connie's husband. As Michael returns home and convinces Kay to marry him, his father recovers and makes peace with his rivals, realizing that another powerful don was pulling the strings behind the narcotics endeavor that began the gang warfare. Once Michael has been groomed as the new don, he leads the family to a new era of prosperity, then launches a campaign of murderous revenge against those who once tried to wipe out the Corleones, consolidating his family's power and completing his own moral downfall. Nominated for 11 Academy Awards and winning for Best Picture, Best Actor (Marlon Brando), and Best Adapted Screenplay, The Godfather was followed by a pair of sequels. ~ Karl Williams, Rovi … More
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as Don Vito Corleone
as Michael Corleone
as Sonny Corleone
as Tom Hagen
as Jack Woltz
as Kay Adams
as Connie Rizzi
as Carlo Rizzi
as Fredo Corleone
as Baby (uncredited)
as Willy Cicci (uncredi...
as Johnny Fontane
as Mama Corleone
as Luca Brasi
as Moe Greene
as Bruno Tattaglia
as Theresa Hagen
as Phillip Tattaglia
as Lucy Mancini
as Sandra Corleone
as Mrs. Clemenza
as Don Tommasino
as Paulie Gatto
as Piano Player (uncred...
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Critic Reviews for The Godfather
Brando is the strong magnet that will draw fans to The Godfather. But behind-the-scenes creativity is of equal value to this film of towering proportions.
I don't see how any gifted actor could have done less than Brando does here. His resident power, his sheer innate force, has rarely seemed weaker.
The Godfather is overflowing with life, rich with all the grand emotions and vital juices of existence, up to and including blood.
To permit us a glimpse at The Mob, with all of its ethnic insularity, is like giving a chronic gambler a chance to wander above the false mirrors that overlook every casino.
Brando's triumph and fascination is less that of an actor of parts than of a star galaxy of myths.
Audience Reviews for The Godfather
Francis Ford Coppola & Mario Puzo bring the famed-mafia novel to life. The Godfather is an excellent portrayal of power, betrayal and family. Beautifully written and stunningly executed, the film is a landmark motion picture with stunning performances (Brando, Pacino, Caan) that is still held up to this day as a timeless classic. 5/5
The son of a Mafia boss returns from the war and following an attempt on his father's life becomes more and more embroiled in the shadowy world of organised crime. Francis Ford Coppola's classic gangster saga is the story of a criminal dynasty headed by Marlon Brando in one of his most iconic roles. Coppola's direction is deceptively simple in that he uses no gimmicks or stylistic tricks; he merely allows the story to unfold and lets the superb cast do their thing. Brando's mumbling family and loyalty obsessed don has since become part of popular culture folklore (along with the classic score) and all other accompanying performances are top notch, from James Caan's hot headed Santino to Robert Duval's purely business orientated adviser. But this film is really the story of Michael's transition from honest war hero to shadowy underworld figure, played by Al Pacino in his finest role. The pivotal scene in which his newborn godson is baptised while Michael himself, the newborn "Godfather", is baptised in blood is an all time great. This is the birth of the modern gangster film and with the possible exception of Goodfellas, it is still to be surpassed.
Outstanding in every possible manner, the feature that would be first in the cinema dictionary to be classed underneath masterpiece. There are certain films that are adored by almost everyone, films that have the honor of being called flawless, films named misunderstood cult classics, but then there's Francis Ford Coppola's "The Godfather". Arguably one of the greatest achievements in American filmmaking. A powerfully acted, grippingly written, utterly overwhelming gem crafted with such skill that it is categorically and unconditionally flawless. I cannot cast enough praise for this film. Aside from merely delivering what we expect when we wish for a big screen experience. Including that of good performances, great scriptwriting and artful direction this delivers so much more. At the time of it's release no person expected it to be as good as it was. But The Godfather gave us all of the above and in addition to that defined a genre. It was the birthplace and remains to this day the high water mark for gangster drama/crime noir filmmaking. It's highly open to debate what the message of the saga is. I see at it as a truthful insight into how the gangster genre is endlessly and carelessly glamourised. That there is actually a lot of pain and heartbreak in the criminal underworld. I also think the film is a lecture on what can be personal as opposed to that what is actual business in the line of organised crime. But also a tale of love, hatred, truth and death. In addition to that, as a companion piece to my favourites, a better cast has never been assembled on screen before. Marlon Brando's most engrossing performance is undeniably showstopping. Al Pacino who plays the role of one of his sons constructs the character inside out. Changes him from a vastly respectable man, to an even more reputable godfather. The way I view it is simple. If a film can grip you so much that you actually manage to sympathise for a universally feared mafia crime lord what your having the pleasure of viewing must be really something and then some. The Godfather is just that, it delivers in every single department. It is quite easily one of the best films that ever graced motion pictures.
The Godfather Quotes
|Don Vito Corleone:||Revenge is a dish best served cold.|
|Don Vito Corleone:||A friend should always underestimate your virtues and an enemy overestimate your faults.|
|Don Vito Corleone:||Revenge is a dish best served cold|
|Don Vito Corleone:||You talk about vengeance. Is vengeance going to bring your son back to you? Or my boy to me?|
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