The Godfather – Movie Review

“I’ll make him an offer he can’t refuse” has become one of the most popular and famous phrases to come out of a movie – ever. And that movie is The Godfather.

Set in 1940s New York, The Godfather tells the story of the Corleone family, a mafia, and their struggle to protect their legacy as rival families seek out their demise.

I will not write out a more detailed synopsis because it is near impossible to do so for this movie without ruining some plot moments. However, The Godfather is a tale that extends over many years without making it feel overstretched or even segregated into different time epochs.

The Godfather is a body of outstanding performances – and not only acting wise. The movie’s score, by Nino Rota, is haunting. Francis Ford Coppolla, a relative unknown at the time the movie was made, is absolutely brilliant in directing. The cinematography, run by Gordon Willis, plunges the movie’s character’s in their world perfectly.

The acting performances are beyond top-notch. Marlon Brando embodies the head of the Corleone family, Don Vito. His performance lets his character strut along the line of good and evil without blinking. As you watch Brando’s performance, you start remembering the many instances when you saw a character similar to Don Vito being acted out – be it with the voice, the attitude, the context…. And the many imitations of this character, after watching the movie, are justified.

The movie is also propelled by an outstanding performance by Al Pacino, as Don Vito’s son Michael, a returning war hero and a character that is even more fascinating that his father – wanting out of the “family business” because he thinks he doesn’t fit well with what they do. Diane Keaton is unrecognizable at first as Kay, Michael’s love interest and Robert Duvall is as mysterious as his enigmatic character Tom Hagen, Don Vito’s adopted son.

The Godfather is a movie in which, scene after scene, those making it prove they know what they’re doing. Be it the long wedding scene which sets the tone for a Machiavellian patriarchy, a character’s “bed” discovery, the many deaths that plague the mafia families, a character combing his hair in a restaurant nervously, etc… it keeps you attached, wanting to know how these characters would interact with what life throws at them.

It is no wonder The Godfather is considered one of the best movies ever made. There is an amount of ingenuity and creativity at work here that is unapproachable. Keep in mind this is a movie released about forty years ago (1972) – and there are movies today, with much better technology and resources available to them – that fail miserably at making something that would transcend the ages.

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4 thoughts on “The Godfather – Movie Review

  1. the beautiful thing about this movie, is that every time you watch it, you’ll discover a new tiny but yet so important detail or quote… i just love how it makes you fall in love with the bad guy, coz yeah the Carleone men are bad guys, or are they
    i dont actually recall Part II but i always hear it’s the best… but about part III, it is pure EPIC! i dont wanna spoil it for you, but Andy Garcia kicks ass in his performances, and the ending gives a fair payback for the bad guy, yet it’s heartbreaking and made me almost cry! now go and complete the sequel and keep us posted with the reviews 😀

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    • I have ruined part 2 for me. But I will definitely “watch” it for real this coming week. Brilliant movies, as you said. But you’re the first person who tells me that the third one is the best :p

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