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Leo Richardson
Leo Richardson

The Godfather: The Legacy of Vito Corleone and His Sons


The Godfather: A Masterpiece of Crime Cinema




If you are a fan of crime movies, you have probably heard of or seen The Godfather, a 1972 film directed by Francis Ford Coppola and based on the novel by Mario Puzo. The Godfather is widely regarded as one of the greatest and most influential films ever made, as well as a landmark of the gangster genre. It tells the story of the Corleone family, a powerful mafia clan in New York, and their struggles with rival gangs, corrupt politicians, and internal conflicts. It also features memorable performances by Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, and others, as well as a haunting score by Nino Rota and Carmine Coppola. In this article, we will explore what makes The Godfather such a masterpiece of crime cinema, from its plot and characters to its themes and production.


Introduction




What is The Godfather about?




The Godfather is set in the post-World War II era, from 1945 to 1955. It follows the life of Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando), the aging patriarch of the Corleone family, who is also known as "the Godfather" for his influence and respect in the underworld. Vito has four sons: Sonny (James Caan), the eldest and the most impulsive; Fredo (John Cazale), the weakest and the most naive; Michael (Al Pacino), the youngest and the most intelligent; and Tom (Robert Duvall), the adopted son and the family lawyer. Vito also has a daughter, Connie (Talia Shire), who marries an abusive husband, Carlo (Gianni Russo).




the godfather



The film depicts how Vito's empire is threatened by a new generation of drug dealers, led by Virgil Sollozzo (Al Lettieri), who is backed by a rival family, the Tattaglias. When Vito refuses to enter the drug business, Sollozzo attempts to assassinate him, but fails. This sparks a violent war between the Corleones and their enemies, which forces Michael, who initially wanted to stay out of the family business, to take charge and protect his father and his brothers. Along the way, Michael falls in love with Kay Adams (Diane Keaton), a college girlfriend who represents his hope for a normal life. However, as Michael becomes more involved in the mafia world, he also becomes more ruthless and cold-blooded, losing his innocence and his humanity.


Why is The Godfather considered a masterpiece?




The Godfather is considered a masterpiece for many reasons. First of all, it is a compelling story that draws the audience into the complex and fascinating world of the mafia. It shows how power, money, and violence shape the lives of the characters, as well as their relationships with each other. It also explores themes such as family, loyalty , morality, and justice, and how they are challenged by the realities of the criminal world. It also portrays the cultural and historical context of the Italian-American community, and how it is affected by immigration, discrimination, and assimilation. The Godfather is also a masterpiece of filmmaking, with a brilliant direction by Francis Ford Coppola, who creates a rich and atmospheric visual style, using lighting, color, and camera angles to convey the mood and the tone of the scenes. The film also boasts a stellar cast of actors, who deliver realistic and nuanced performances, especially Marlon Brando, who transforms himself into the iconic role of Vito Corleone, and Al Pacino, who shows the dramatic arc of Michael Corleone. The film also features a memorable score by Nino Rota and Carmine Coppola, who use traditional Italian music and operatic motifs to create a sense of nostalgia and tragedy. The Godfather is a film that has influenced many other films and genres, as well as popular culture and society. It is a film that has been praised by critics and audiences alike, and has won many awards and honors. It is a film that deserves to be seen and appreciated by anyone who loves cinema.


The Plot




The Wedding




The film begins with the wedding of Connie Corleone and Carlo Rizzi, which takes place at the Corleone estate in Long Island. The wedding is a lavish and festive occasion, where many guests come to pay their respects to Vito Corleone and ask him for favors. Among them are Johnny Fontane (Al Martino), a famous singer who is Vito's godson, who asks him to help him get a role in a Hollywood movie; Amerigo Bonasera (Salvatore Corsitto), a funeral director who asks him to avenge his daughter's assault by two young men; and Luca Brasi (Lenny Montana), Vito's loyal enforcer who thanks him for his generosity. Meanwhile, Michael Corleone arrives with his girlfriend Kay Adams, whom he introduces to his family. Michael tells Kay about his father's business and his own decision to join the army during the war. He also tells her that he is different from his family and that he wants to have a legitimate career.


The Turf War




The wedding is interrupted by the arrival of Tom Hagen, who informs Vito that he has been summoned by Virgil Sollozzo, a drug dealer who works for the Tattaglia family. Sollozzo wants to make a deal with Vito to finance his drug operation in exchange for protection and a share of the profits. Vito meets with Sollozzo and his associates, including Captain McCluskey (Sterling Hayden), a corrupt police officer who is on Sollozzo's payroll. Vito politely declines Sollozzo's offer, saying that he does not want to get involved in drugs because it is too risky and it would ruin his reputation. He also warns Sollozzo not to harm his son Sonny, who has expressed interest in the drug business. Sollozzo is disappointed but respectful of Vito's decision.


However, Sollozzo does not give up on his plan. He decides to eliminate Vito as an obstacle and to persuade Sonny to take over the family business. He hires some hitmen to ambush Vito outside his office and shoot him several times. Vito survives the attack but is critically wounded. The news of Vito's shooting shocks his family and his associates. Sonny takes command of the family and vows revenge on Sollozzo and the Tattaglias. He orders his men to go to war with them, despite Tom's advice to negotiate instead. He also sends Luca Brasi to spy on Sollozzo and report back to him.


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Meanwhile, Michael visits his father at the hospital and finds out that he is alone and unprotected. He realizes that someone has betrayed him and that another attempt on his life is imminent. He calls Sonny and tells him to send some men to guard Vito. He also moves his father to another room and stands outside with a fake gun to deter any attackers. Soon enough, he sees two men approaching the hospital: Sollozzo and McCluskey. They try to enter the hospital but are stopped by Michael and another man named Enzo (Gabriele Torrei), a baker who came to visit Vito as a favor. Michael confronts them and tells them that they cannot see his father. McCluskey punches Michael in the face and breaks his jaw. He then tells Sollozzo that they will leave for now but they will come back later.


The Revenge




Michael decides that he has to kill Sollozzo and McCluskey before they kill his father. He volunteers to do it himself, despite Son ny's and Tom's objections. He arranges a meeting with Sollozzo and McCluskey at a restaurant, where he will find a gun hidden in the bathroom. He also tells his family that he will leave the country after the killings. At the restaurant, Michael sits with Sollozzo and McCluskey, who


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