The Godfather

The Godfather ★★★★★

"I'll make him an offer he can't refuse. "

The Godfather is one of my personal favorite movies—I generally try to watch it at least once a year, sometimes more.

The way Francis Ford Coppola world builds in this movie really shouldn’t be underestimated; he has created what genuinely feels like a living, breathing environment full of these rich characters that feel as much like a family to the audience as any fictional family can. The great writing, acting, and directing in this movie make something truly unique and powerful that has gone on to inspire filmmakers and has earned the admiration of film critics and film buffs the world over.

I also think its quite notable that The Godfather, unlike a film like Citizen Kane or Persona, seems accessible to pretty much anyone that watches it; sometimes certain “great” films feel like they go over the heads of the masses, as it were, but The Godfather is the rare film that transcends this barrier. Thus, it has remained highly acclaimed not only on erudite lists of the greatest films of all time like the “Sight & Sound” poll or the “They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They?” Top 1000 greatest films, but also always fitting comfortably among the more general fanbases of IMDb and even our home here at Letterboxd.

And I really think that comes down to what I mentioned before about the family elements of this picture. Even when these people are doing evil things, there’s just so much humanity in them that it makes hating them quite difficult. Instead, we root for them to make the best decisions for themselves and others. We see ourselves in Michael Corleone, who ascends the family business initially to protect his father. That’s something we could all see ourselves doing.

An amazing film about terrible people behaving nobly, The Godfather will always remain a pinnacle of the art of film, and even finding new words to say about it can only feel like an exercise in futility.