"In order to recover a bit from a recent feeling of exhaustion, I spent a significant amount of this past weekend diligently sitting on my ass, in front of the television. On Saturday night, I popped in my copy of Woody Allen’s 'Manhattan,' which, among other things, is as stunningly designed a movie as I’ve ever seen. This is largely thanks to the work of Gordon Willis, a master cinematographer who, apart from his incredible work on this film, was also responsible for photographing an alarmingly high share of my favorite movies of all time: 'The Godfather,' 'The Godfather Part II,' 'All the President’s Men,' and 'The Parallax View,' among others." [more inside]
Prolific actor Alex Rocco, perhaps best known for his performance as Moe Greene in "The Godfather", has passed away at the age of 79.
"The spirit of the 60s lives in these trailers, leaning hard on mood and music, not plot. The same is true for the Godfather trailer, as Coppola gives audiences a peak into the Corleone family.-- An epic history of the movie trailer, by Matthew Schimkowitz
However, the closer Hollywood gets to the age of the blockbuster, the more the modern trailer starts to reveal itself, and it all starts with Jaws -- the film phenomenon of the summer of 1975. [ ... ] It introduced something new to trailers: relying almost entirely on the narrative of the film to advertise it. In 3 minutes and 21 seconds, the entire story arc of the film, save for the ending, is given away. There’s a shark terrorizing the beach on the 4th of July, it’s up to a local sheriff to take care of it, and he teams with a scientist and a fisherman to get the job done."
"And it's pretty clear the idea behind this choice is to stress how distant Kay is from the dark universe of the Corleones."
The drama behind the making of The Godfather is nearly as intriguing as the movie itself. A recent Vanityfair piece recounts "how the clash of Hollywood sharks, Mafia kingpins, and cinematic geniuses shaped a Hollywood masterpiece." A follow-up article tells of a fateful dinner between the film's stars and members of the famous Genovese crime family. [more inside]
A really interesting commentary from Mario Puzo, author of The Godfather, about how he came to write the book and how that book became one of the most iconic films in history. The post includes previously unseen (and illuminating) photos of the cast and the making of the film.
Pax Corleone Americana? "Can any of the candidates vying to become the next president of the United States match Michael’s cool, dispassionate courage in the face of epochal change? Will they avoid living in the comforting embrace of the past, from which both Tom and Sonny ultimately could not escape? Or will they emulate Michael’s flexibility—to preserve America’s position in a dangerous world?" The Godfather as metaphor.
Iraq run by the Corleone family? Found a good story on Saddam Hussein’s two sons who seem to be poised to rule. It's reported that Saddam's favorite movie is The Godfather and the similarities between the film and the family is pretty interesting.
Maunday, Toosday, Thursday, Saturday... The special effects of the Godfather. How did they rig Santino's tollbooth demise? How did Moe Greene get shot through the lens of his glasses? Great reading for any movie or special-effects geek.
The Godfather Mystery Goof is now solved. Thanks to Roger Ebert, Francis Ford Coopola, and Mike Spearns from Newfoundland.