Monday, March 19, 2018
"The Godfather" films: the issues are still with us today
Recently, a Facebook friend reported that he had watched The Godfather films at home, and he gave a ringing 4-stars to the first film, dating from 1972, as directed by Francis Ford Coppola, from Paramount Pictures, 195 minutes. The screenplay had been written with novelist Mario Puzo.
I remember seeing this film in an older theater in Manhattan on 57th Street in 1973, when I was commuting into the City many weekend days while living in New Jersey (I would ten go to the Ninth Street Center on a Saturday, for cherry picking).
What strikes me particularly is a conversation where Marlon Brando’s character says he specializes in “services” that legitimate businesses are not allowed to indulge themselves in. Prostitution is one of them. Think about the Backpage issue, the Internet, and the serious challenge to Section 230 now (and the way federal law is now being increased to include prostitution as well as sex trafficking per se). Another was pornography, at least based on adult consensual sex. I actually would see “Deep Throat” with a trick in January 1976 on Times Square. (I may do a post on this one later; doesn’t look like I have one yet.)
The story revolves around his son’s rise to power (as played by Al Pacino).
I do remember the wedding scene near the beginning (all arranged, or was that Film II?), and particularly a violent execution at a New Jersey Turnpike toll plaza, as well as restaurant assassinations Ponder these films today also in connection with the gun control debate.