Erik [Auk]’s review published on Letterboxd:
It's been about two months since I first saw The Godfather, and now I've sat down and finished the sequel! On the whole I thought the film was just as enrapturing as the first one, and the 3+ hour runtime just breezed by like before because the story and characters are so engaging.
The film is darker and even more tragic, if that was even possible after the first film. Thankfully we do have flashback scenes of Vito Corleone's life arriving in America that provide some more upbeat relief from the oppression of the main plot of Michael's further descent into revenge and violence, breaking our hearts alongside his own.
Part II is very close to the original film in quality for me with its high production quality, great story and characters, and terrific acting that it's hard for me to choose between them. If I absolutely had to, I would say I preferred the original Godfather just because of its original development and transformation of the character of Michael as opposed to this film where he starts dark and just gets darker, though again I would reiterate that I enjoyed this film just as much as the first.
I've been warned against watching Part III, but for now The Godfather: Part II is an amazing companion piece to The Godfather that just continues the story without falling amiss creatively as sequels sometimes tend to do.