This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Noa’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
The Godfather part 2 is, just like it's predecessor, a near perfect masterpiece.
This movie had a lot more to deliver on than the first one and it made it very difficult for itself by being both a prequel and sequel to part one, and it works. The story here is like an intricate machinery that should not work but Coppola, through his complete mastery of his craft, manages to engineer it to perfection.
Every singel scene that took place before the first movie was great and I also thought they added a lot more depth,, weight and complexity to the narrative and characters of the first movie. I could understand why Vito did certain things in the first movie and everything he did in this movie fell in line flawlessly with the character we know he will become, I feel like I have completly understood a fictional character and what made him who he was. That is some next level shit that I couldn't even dream of pulling of this, again, flawlessly. I love that in this movie Vito's actions are bold and inventive whilst in part one he is being called old fashion.
Oh, and the reason Sonny was so angry about his sister getting abused by her husbamd in the first movie, other than the fact that she got abused, was probably because he set up his sister with her husband. So in the end he was really responsible for his own destruction.
Now I need to talk about all the stuff that took place after the first movie, I loved it. This movie takes everything set up by the first movie and expands on it in the best ways possible. I loved that Michael, the one who didn't want to get involved with all of this, has turned into a ruthless, strategic, unforgiving monster, portrayed brilliantly by Pacion, who just became more remorseless as the movie want a long and he want through more shit when trying to live up to his father and keep his syndicate alive, when in fact that is not who Vito Corleone was and something he would not be proud of.
The story or rather stories were expertly written and perfectly complimented the characters and their arcs. The main story, the one that takes place after part one, was more complex than the first one's but I never found it to confusing. They took the characters and put them in interesting scenarios that they couldn't naturally be in in the first one and it all felt so incredibly natural here, having a traitor within the family was, although maybe a bit obvious, a stroke of genius, the court hearing was something I didn't know I wanted but I'm so glad it happened. Everyone and everything had a purpose in the grand scheme of these two movies and nothing was unnecessary and in the end it all comes together to one of the best and most breathtaking climaxes I have ever seen, it's a massive emotional gut punch that felt earned.
As for Vito's "prequel" story I, agin thought it was done marvelously. I felt for him, I could see how everything he went through shaped him and when he completed his arc and truly became the Godfather that we know I was just in awe. There was just so much more weight to him than the first movie led us to believe.
In the end these movies are about family and what it means to be apart of a family and how one is effected by being a part of family. I think the family dynamics in these moves are crafted and explored very well, the emotional core and messages of this is very powerful and I think most people will relate to something or someone in there which is a very cool thing for a movie to have achieved.
I don't need to talk about the filmmaking because it's, like in the first movie, not necessary for it to be excellent. To me the cinematography of these films is a mystery, I don't understand how they did it and I don't know how it could fit this well. The shots and camera movements were not as perfect as in the first movie but it felt bolder and like it tried something newer and that really makes up for it. The blocking and framing is out of this world. And the set design is almost as classy as in the first one. Everyone, even the most talented director, can probably still learn from these movies
I do really think these movies are the most well realised and best movies ever created that re the closest we have gotten to absolute perfection yet. I don't know if I prefer this one over the first. It felt just as iconoc and definitely grander and more bold which is too be expected by a sequel but I felt like, unlike in the first one, there were some things that could have been a bit more well rounded but are in the end just nitpicks.
🔙 The Godafther