Movie Review: No 2. The Godfather

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Movie Review: No 2. The Godfather

I have two words for you.

False.

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All these years I thought ‘The Godfather’ was going to be all about “the Don”. Marlon Brando at his best, enunciating at his worst, gently scratching his chin and making all sorts of offers that no one in their right mind would refuse.

Sure, the movie had all that, but will someone please tell me why the entire movie-going world failed to mention the real star of this film: the Don’s son, Michael? The Don himself is bedridden for around 80% of the film so why, then, does he get all the press? Michael is the real Godfather (something that I assume will be revealed in full in the second film). I thoroughly object to Al Pacino being forced into Marlon Brando’s shadow when it is clearly his star shining.

Alright, now that I’ve got that out of my system I’ll try to review this movie (without offending the countless people who’d nudge it all the way to number 1 if they could).

Don Corleone: I like to drink wine more than I used to… [pause] Anyway, I’m drinking more.

After watching the Godfather, I’m left with one big question mark floating around in the cavernous void that should house my brain. Basically, that question mark is all about the cat. Was Vito Corleone the original cat-patting villain?

(Now, because I am from Gen Y, I believe there is no such thing as an unanswered question so it’s high time I googled it).

There have been many cat-patting villains of course. Those that immediately spring to mind include Austin Powers’ Dr Evil and Inspector Gadget’s Dr Claw. Then there is James Bond’s Dr No (well, technically, ‘Ernst Stavro Blofeld from the movie ‘Dr No’) – who Dr Evil is clearly based on. He also had metal hands which suggest he’s also the clear inspiration for Dr Claw.

In googling, I have once again revealed my cinematic ignorance. Not only did James Bond well and truly go there first, but the cat in the Godfather was not even part of the script! Instead, it was mere happenstance resulting from the presence of a stray on set. (Interestingly, I understand the cat’s purring muffled Brando’s already-unintelligible rantings to the point where both the director and myself share the view that subtitles may have been necessary in that scene).

Things I liked about this film:

  • The fact that around 50% of the extras at the wedding appear to be bridesmaids.
  • The highly fashionable bridesmaids’ dresses (“certain someones” may recognise the floppy hat look that another “certain someone” paraded around in on Saturday night)
  • The horse head scene (although for all these years I thought he’d find it on the pillow when instead it was tucked away under the sheets – damn you Simpsons education!)
  • The scene where Sonny beats Carlo with his own shoe – classic!
  • Vito Corleone’s silly Grandad face (which reminded me very much of my own Grandad :))
  • The scene interspersing the baptism with brutal violence – so poignant.

Things I didn’t like about this film:

  • None.

I hear the sequel is even better (though the stupid imdb list says otherwise). Bring it on!

9 pumpkins.

Have you seen ‘The Godfather’? Do you agree with my review? Let me know in the comments below.

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12 responses »

    • Aww sorry schmoopy! I reckon we should watch #2 together. I hear it’s better anyway and there was NO WAY I was gonna manage a movie marathon when the first one is 3 hours long!

      Next free weekend we’ll have a movie night!

  1. Have I seen it? Have I seen it? Why, I snuck into the cinema to see it as an R rated movie well before I was able to do so but then the security at the Padstow Star cinema wasn’t that flash and those were different times. I’ve seen it about a bajillion times and you really have to see all three in quick succession to get the whole thing. Michael IS the star, it’s just that Brando got paid a bajillion dollars for being in it (one dollar of each of my tickets paid for his role). It’s not mistake that all three won best picture oscars. All three are definitely in my top ten.

    What I really like about the movies is seeing the stars in later movies together. Like for example, the Oceans series and how in ‘Ocean’s 13’ Pacino and Andy Garcia square off – again, and in ‘Heat’ you’ve got Pacino and De Niro facing off.

    Gangster movies – geez I love ’em.

    I love ’em so much that I saw Godfather 3 in Perth while waiting for my red-eye flight back to Sydney which I then missed becaiuse the movie was so long and I didn’t check the finish time. But those were different times too and my Ansett ticket got me onto the later-leaving Qantas flight. That wouldn’t happen nowadays because gangsters are running the airlines. Bastards!

    P.S. the book was better and page 18 in our school library’s copy was notoriously dog-eared.

    • If you love gangster movies then you’d love this Top 100 list, Dad!

      It’s funny watching it in the wrong order (in other words, I’ve seen some of those actors’ more recent films before I saw this one). I don’t really get that same experience. It’s like watching a bajillion Kevin Spacey movies and *then* watching ‘The Usual Suspects’. I always loved him as an actor, but I’ve since watched LA Confidential as well, and now every time I see him all I can think of is him in ‘The Usual Suspects’. It’s very distracting!

      I imagine that your experience of Pacino and De Niro facing off in ‘Heat’ is like my experience of when “Shane” and “Toadie” faced off in Neighbours! It’s like all your Christmases have come at once! 😀 hahahaha

  2. You left out Pepe Le Pew as a (in)famous cat-patter, although I doubt he was villianous: “This little love bundle. Now she is seeking for us a trysting place. Touching, is it not? Come, my little peanut of brittle. I will help you. Wait for me. Wait.”

    • Haha cat molester more like. That poor cat! I’ve never seen another animal so frequently accidentally painted with a big white stripe to make them look like a skunk. Now THAT is some seriously bad luck.

  3. Ummm…..Michael Corleone became Th’ Godfather. That was th’ point of th’ movie. And why have you waited until 2013 to watch it? They are brilliant movies. Even Godfather III is pretty good, despite th’ critics.

    Yikes!

    • That’s exactly my point Paul! Michael is the star of the movie but Vito is the one that gets all the press. He is one of the most quoted characters in cinematic history but he’s only there for part of the movie.

      I have no excuse as to why I’ve waited this long to see it… But I’m very glad I have seen it!

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