Tag: Marlon Brando

The Godfather

September 30th, 2018 — 6:02pm


The Godfather

Recently my son, grandson and I got together for an evening of pizza and watching the original Godfather movie, which won the Oscar for Best Picture in 1973. It also won the Oscar for Marlon Brando as Best Actor in a Leading Role and Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola won an Oscar for Best Screenplay. Coppola (who was a high school classmate of mine) was nominated for the Oscar for Best Director as were James Caan, Robert Duvall, Al Pacino for Best Supporting Actor. Also in the film were Diane Keaton, Talia Shire, Ali MacGraw, Robert De Niro, Jill Clayburgh, the singer Al Martino and many other excellent actors and actresses. The movie also won the “75 years of Golden Globes Best Picture”.

The storyline, if you don’t know, is about an organized crime family in the 1950s led by Don Corleone (Marlon Brando) referred to as the “Godfather” and how they confronted the appearance of narcotics on the New York City crime scene. It is also about how the Godfather is transferring his power to his youngest son, Michael Corleone, a decorated United States Marine just returning from the war (Al Pacino). The movie depicts the lifestyle of this crime family with grandiose lovely wedding celebrations, as well as brutal murder scenes.

The fact that our viewing team of three did not notice nor mind the about three hours of running time of the film attest to the well-deserved success of the movie. In fact, it was my impression that the classic depiction of the Godfather by Marlon Brando appeared to be a much shorter role than I remembered it (although no one questioned his well-deserved acclaim). It was also interesting that his mumbled speech and the Italian accent of some of the characters led to the youngest member of our viewing team to turn on the English subtitle feature, which I didn’t even know was possible. Another feature of this movie was the recurring, haunting and memorable music theme, which was voted Best Grammy Score of a Motion Picture for that year.

If you are interested in re-experiencing a “blast from the past,” taking another pass at this great movie is highly recommended. Keep in mind  that there are two sequels also available. (1972)

Comment » | 5 Stars, Crime, Drama

Don Juan DeMarco

July 29th, 2013 — 6:51am

***Don Juan DeMarco

Don Juan DeMarco nf   – When we chose this film for our next Netflix choice, we thought it might be quite interesting to see two great actors of different generations interacting. We also heard that Brando played a psychiatrist, which is always of special interest to us. We encountered an extremely obese Brando (almost 70 years at the time) playing Dr. Jack Mickler, a psychiatrist working in an hospital in Queens,  New York 10 days away from retirement, who encounters Depp, 31 years old at the time but playing Don Juan De Marco , 21 years old on the verge of suicide, who believes he is the greatest lover in the world, having made love to over a  1000 women. The young masked lover relates his tale of growing up in Mexico and having fallen in love with his tutor at age 16 and then the circumstances which  led to his having to revenge his father’s death in a dual while defending his mother’s honor. He goes on to relate  the unusual story which this young lover of women has experienced in his short life. It is told with such intensity, sensitivity and almost believability that the good doctor reexamines his relationship with his wife (still beautiful Faye Dunaway) and their romance seems revitalized. The story was written and directed by Jeremy Leven who shared the writing credits with Lord Byron , who wrote the original Don Juan. The magic of this movie is both the empathy which Depp elicits for the tale of his life and the empathic feelings and identification which Brando conveys for his patient. The latter is in contrast to the psychiatric colleagues who are insisting on antipsychotic medication rather than hearing him out and understanding his story (which is something we do encounter from time to time  in well meaning colleagues in various mental health settings). In the end we had the pleasure of getting a taste of the subtlety that Brando could bring to a role as he performed in  the 35th of what was to be a 39 film magnificent career. At the same time we saw Depp in his 12th film appearance which thus far has included 49 movies in which he often takes on as he did in this one, a very unusual and unique character. (1994)

Comment » | 3 Stars, Drama, Romance

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