T he first time I saw The Godfather I could not believe that I had lived 25 years without ever seeing this exquisite masterpiece. It completely had me on its grip from the opening scene, the respect that Don Vito Corleone demanded and his dominant presence on screen is amazing. Francis Ford Coppola did an excellent work as the film director and his work is impeccable from the beginning to the very end. The locations he shows are magnificent, the music goes perfectly well with the different situations we get to see in The Godfather and his adaptation of the original novel by Mario Puzo is recognized as a masterpiece by many generations. The movie´s cast is outstanding with young talents such as Al Pacino and Diane Keaton, and the legendary Marlon Brando.
The Godfather, Don Vito Corleone, performed by Marlon Brando, is the head of the Corleone mafia family. He is a dedicated man to his family and his business, the kind of business favored by those involved in the Mafia. Many come to pay him their respects and ask favors for them, protection and special deals. Marlon Brando completely killed it with his performance, he inspires trust and confidence to those who respect him but he is also an expert in making offers too good to refuse.
Alongside Marlon Brando, we see Robert Duvall, whose character´s called Tom Hagen, the family consigliere. He handles all the legal and most crucial business of the Corleone Family next to The Godfather´s eldest son, Sonny, interpreted by James Caan. These two are the closest to the Don but he also has two more sons, Fredo (John Cazale), Michael (Al Pacino) and his daughter Connie (Talia Shire). Sonny is very rash and has an explosive character, which costs him dearly at the end, completely opposite to his next brother Fredo, who is very passive and the weakest link in the chain, next to their sister.
Michael Corleone is the apple who fell most closely to the tree, very much alike his father, he takes the family business very seriously and is a man of honor. He goes through a complicated situation due to his family business nature, especially because of his girlfriend, the beautiful Kay Addams, performed by Diane Keaton. She is what you would call a good catch because of her sweetness and innocence. Nevertheless, the Corleone Family is not innocent and their lifestyle is completely different to hers. Al Pacino and Diane Keaton show an amazing chemistry in the movie and the spectator can really feel the love they show for each other.
The Godfather was shot mainly in New York but we also get to see a little bit of Sicily, where Francis Coppola delights us with beautiful locations and a nice twist to the movie. There Michael meets a local girl that immediately dazzles him and she gives the movie another direction. We get to take a look at the real roots of the Mafia families and how they handle their misunderstandings. Al Pacino, James Caan and Robert Duvall received nominations for their supporting roles but only Marlon Brando received the Oscar for Best Lead Role and the movie also won Best Movie and Best Adaptation award.
The Don and his devotion for his family, the consigliere, the cold blooded killings and the Mafia lifestyle surrounds the spectator in this movie and at some point you even dream of meeting Don Corleone and his family. Behind all the violence and tough characters, one can appreciate how close this family is and how far has the Don gone to keep them safe and well fed. Because in the end, our family is the one that has our back in the worst situations and as Don Vito Corleone once said: A man who doesn’t spend time with his family cannot call himself a real man.