1) RELATE WHAT WAS DISCUSSED IN CLASS OR THE TEXT TO THE SCREENING.

The Godfather is more than just a simple dog-eat-dog gangster movie. It is a classic which is built of
small tales and riveting climaxes which build up into one big mega climax. The movie is about a New
York Don, Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando) who is a 'reasonable' man. He gets shot by another gangster.
How his son Michael avenges this and establishes the supremacy of the Corleone family is the plot. This
is perhaps the greatest movie of all time. The Corleone Family, headed by the Don, the Godfather, Vito
Corleone, is home to Michael Corleone, brilliantly played by Al Pacino, Sonny, played incredibly well by
James Caan, and adopted brother Tom Hagen, by Robert Duval, another exceptional performance. The
love and respect this family has within its boundaries is unmatched. The other Families {Mobsters} want
the aid of Don Corleone because he has effectively kept the city's politicians in his pocket. If he gives
them adequate control, or acts as an accord, they will be able to easily trade and sell narcotics throughout
the city. However, Vito doesn't like the drug business, to him, it's a "dirty business", according to his
principles, and a war ensues.
2) FIND A RELATED ARTICLE AND SUMMARIZE THE CONTENT. (on the film, director, studio,
actor/actress, artistic content, etc.) You can use the library or the internet. We will discuss suitable
references in class. CITE THE ARTICLE AND COPY THE URL TO YOUR JOURNAL ENTRY. YOU SHOULD ALSO
MENTION THE TITLE OF THE ARTICLE AND AUTHOR DIRECTLY IN THE ANSWER. SUMMARIZE IN YOUR
OWN WORDS THE RELATED ARTICLE BUT DO NOT PLAGARIZE ANY CONTENT.
Widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time, this mob drama, based on Mario Puzo's novel of
the same name, focuses on the powerful Italian-American crime family of Don Vito Corleone (Marlon
Brando). When the don's youngest son, Michael (Al Pacino), reluctantly joins the Mafia, he becomes
involved in the inevitable cycle of violence and betrayal. Although Michael tries to maintain a normal
relationship with his wife, Kay (Diane Keaton), he is drawn deeper into the family business.
The story of course is well known. In the late 1940s, Don Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando) rules a
powerful, politically well-connected mafia family in New York City. He is a family-man, however, and
most of the tension in the film is generated by the admirably close family loyalties of the characters
contrasted with the violent illegality of their daily lives. Deeply dividing the mafia families in New York
is the question of the burgeoning trade in narcotics, and the fallout includes an attempt on the Don’s life.
This brings one of the Don’s sons, Michael (Al Pacino), who had stood outside the family business, back
in. Michael is capable and sympathetic (a war hero even), but when he joins the family business, we
quickly see his lethalness. Much of the emotional impact of the film comes from following his narrative
arc – from affable and promising young man to silent, homicidal mafia kingpin.
http://movies.msn.com/movies/movie-synopsis/the-godfather/
3) APPLY THE ARTICLE TO THE FILM SCREENED IN CLASS. HOW DID THE ARTICLE SUPPORT OR CHANGE
THE WAY YOU THOUGHT ABOUT THE FILM, DIRECTOR, CONTENT, ETC.?
Throughout the film, in contrast to the morality of the Don, we see the corruption of the State. In the
wedding scene, very early in the film, we begin to see the relationship between the Don and the State
when Tom Hagen tells him that a senator and "some of the judges" had called to apologize for not being
there, but that "they’ve all sent gifts." This is clarified a little later when Sollozzo, who wants the Don to
finance his drug business, tells him "I need a man who has powerful friends…. I need, Don Corleone,
those politicians that you carry in your pocket like so many nickels and dimes." They’re for sale, and the
Don has purchased them. Later, when the Don is laying in the hospital after an attempt on his life, it’s a
New York City police chief, on another family’s payroll, who takes the guards away to make it easier for
a second attempt (foiled by Michael, whose jaw is promptly broken by the chief who has his men hold
him in place while he hits him). And late in the film, the film speaks very specifically about the State
when Michael and Kay have their first conversation upon his return to America. Michael says that his
father is "no different than any other powerful man, any man who's responsible for other people, like a
senator or a president."
4) WRITE A CRITICAL ANALYSIS OF THE FILM, INCLUDING YOUR PERSONAL OPINION, FORMED AS A
RESULT OF 4 THINGS: THE SCREENING, CLASS DISCUSSIONS, TEXT MATERIAL AND THE ARTICLE. I AM
LESS INTERESTED IN WHETHER YOU LIKED OR DISLIKED A FILM, (ALTHOUGH THAT CAN BE PART OF THIS)
THAN I AM IN YOUR UNDERSTANDING OF ITS PLACE IN FILM HISTORY OR THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF THE
DIRECTOR.
Perhaps one reason for the film’s great vigor is the basis of its script in the excellent novel by Mario Puzo.
Puzo, a professional writer with purported contacts to Cosa Nostra, brings more narrative gravity to this
mob story than other good mob movies with original scripts like Donnie Brasco or Scorsese’s various
efforts. Rather than re-invent the wheel, director Francis Ford Coppola wisely stepped aside to let Puzo
write the screenplays for all three Godfather films. The story is deep, complex and rich. Good films can
withstand and reward repeated viewings, and bring you back to uncover more detail. Coppola and Puzo
particularly deserve credit for identifying the drug trade as a deeply dividing traditional organized crime
in the United States. As John Gotti, arguably the last don, protested on his arrest, the Cosa Nostra had
some sense of proportion or “rules” (Gotti’s own term). During the film, Brando counsels one supplicant
to justice instead of vengeance, and the assembled families agree that the drug trade is to be controlled.
The Godfather is a window into a world of organized crime that scarcely exists anymore and prompts us
to wonder if we might not be better off with them than what followed. The film has the required length to
let us meet each character and develop an empathy with them. Such a film about the Cosa Nostra works
because we care about the characters and are crushed that they live so violently. A story about
gangbangers is less powerful, because while they too live violently, we don’t care much about them
anyway.
CHECKLIST FOR PLAGIARISM
1) (x ) I have not handed in this assignment for any other class.
2) (x ) If I reused any information from other pages I have written for other classes, I clearly explain that
in the paper.
3) (x ) If I used any passages word for word, I put quotations around those words, or used indentation
and citation within the text.
4) (x ) I have not padded the bibliography. I have used all sources cited in the bibliography in the text of
the paper.
5) (x ) I have cited in the bibliography only the pages I personally read.
6) (x ) I have used direct quotations only in class where it could not be stated in another way. I cited the
source within the paper and in the bibliography.
7) (x ) I did not so over-use direct quotations that the paper lacks interpretation or originality.
8) (x ) I checked yes on steps 1-7 and therefore have been fully transparent about the research and ideas
used in my paper.
Name: ___________Carla Baylor____________________________
Date: ____________5/12/14________________________________