Francis & the Mob (50 All-Time Greatest Films)

50 Days 50 Films…One a Day for 50 Straight Days: My All-Time 50 Favorite Films

(Just a single rule: mix-tape-style, no more than one film per director. You know, because otherwise the whole thing would be pointless.)

(#20) The Godfather


Crime     •     dir. Francis Ford Coppola     •     1972     •     USA

The Godfather
I’ve only ever seen The Godfather twice. I know. Call myself a film fan? My Godfather view tally should be up in double figures by now, surely. (Still worse, I’ve never seen the much-maligned Part III.) If it’s not too shabby of me, let me offer a couple of things in my defense. One, like everybody else, I’ve seen bits of The Godfather many times. On just about all of the last seven Thanksgivings, for instance: it’s always on TV, and I always try and click over to it – whenever my father-in-law steps out the room and instead of interminable football. Two, both times I watched it properly, I paid to. On the big screen.

I watched, of course, in awed silence. That first time, as a film studies undergrad in Canterbury, at my beloved Cinema 3. I felt like a Catholic meeting the Pope. Even with the highest possible expectations, The Godfather didn’t disappoint. From Pacino’s mesmeric eyes to Brando’s commanding jowl, Coppola’s preternaturally assured direction (he made the film aged 32) to the consummate cinematography, editing and sound design: The Godfather is as good as film gets. Introducing it to the audience at Canterbury, a visibly nervous Film Society volunteer said, “I think you’ll all like this – I think it’s quite good.” Twelve years later, I still feel for him. Standing in front of The Godfather, you can’t hope to feel anything but small. It’s monumental. Like the Panama Canal. The riches of the Rockefellers. The Babe in ′27, swinging a red hot bat.


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About newjonnytransit

Same as ever, only better.
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4 Responses to Francis & the Mob (50 All-Time Greatest Films)

  1. Robert E Main says:

    Yes, yes, yes but only #20 I was thinking much higher for this one. I also don’t buy into part 2 better than 1. This was the original, first and best one

    • I agree with you, on all counts… Part 2 is still pretty epic, though. What do you think of Part 3. Sounds kind of ropey.

      • Robert E Main says:

        Far too long part 2 that was my problem with it and did too much of that Tarantino thing of jumping around the timeline albeit with on a smaller scale. Part 3 was entertaining enough but ask yourself does part one stand up on its own without 2 and 3 the answer is yes. Also I agree part 3 was as ropey as an untried donner kebab on a Friday night/Saturday morning

  2. Pingback: All Things Said & Done (50 All-Time Greatest Films) | The New Jonny Transit Blog

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