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ENGL 4860: Special Topics in Film Studies The Gangster Film Spring 2011 Room: PH 322 Day/Time: Monday, 430-730 pm Gangster Film.

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Presentation on theme: "ENGL 4860: Special Topics in Film Studies The Gangster Film Spring 2011 Room: PH 322 Day/Time: Monday, 430-730 pm Gangster Film."— Presentation transcript:

1 ENGL 4860: Special Topics in Film Studies The Gangster Film Spring 2011 Room: PH 322 Day/Time: Monday, pm Gangster Film

2 2/14/11 | Meeting 4 The GodfatherThe Godfather (Francis Ford Coppola, 1972; 175m) Reading: Clarens (GFR, 107)

3 Gangster Film

4 G. P. Putnam’s, 1969 Mario Puzo ( )

5 Gangster Film Francis Ford Coppola (1939- ) Dementia 13 (1963) The Terror (1963) You're a Big Boy Now (1966) Finian's Rainbow (1968) The Rain People (1969) Patton (1970) (writer) The Godfather (1972) The Conversation (1974) The Godfather Part II (1974) Apocalypse Now (1979) One from the Heart (1982) The Outsiders (1983) Rumble Fish (1983) The Cotton Club (1984) Peggy Sue Got Married (1986) Gardens of Stone (1987) Tucker: The Man and His Dream (1988) The Godfather Part III (1990) Dracula (1992) Jack (1996) The Rainmaker (1997) Youth Without Youth (2007) Tetro (2009)

6 Gangster Film The Godfather: Cast CharacterActor/Actress Don Vito CorleoneMarlon Brando Michael CorleoneAl Pacino Sonny CorleoneJames Caan Peter ClemensaRicharc Castellano Tom HagenRobert Duvall Captain McCluskeySterling Hayden Connie Corleone RizziTalia Shire Kay AdamsDiane Keaton Fredo CorleoneJohn Cazale

7 Gangster Film The Godfather: Cast (continued) CharacterActor/Actress Jack WoltzJohn Marley Don BarziniRichard Conte Virgil SollozzoAl Lettieri Sal TesioAbe Vigoda Carlo RizziGianni Russo Johnny FontaneAl Martino Mama CorleoneMorgana King Luca BrasiLenny Montana Michael Francis RizziSofia Coppola

8 Gangster Film The Godfather Chapters in bold will be shown in class. 1. I Believe In America 2. The Wedding 3. Johnny Fontane 4. Tom Hagen Goes To Hollywood 5. Meeting With Sollozzo 6. Shooting Of Don Corleone 7. Luca Brasi Sleeps With The Fishes 8. Michael At The Hospital 9. It's Strictly Business 10. How's The Italian Food In This Restaurant? 11. The Don Returns Home 12. The Thunderbolt 13. Sonny Gives Carlo A Warning 14. Michael Marries Apollonia 15. I Don't Want His Mother To See Him This Way 16. Apollonia's Murder 17. We Are All Reasonable Men Here 18. The Don Puts Michael In Charge 19. I'm Moe Green 20. I Never Wanted This For You 21. Baptism And Murder 22. Don't Ask Me About My Business, Kay 23. End Credits

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11 Notes from “Making of The Godfather” & “The Masterpiece That Almost Wasn’t” & “When the Shooting Stopped” (from The Godfather: Supplements DVD)  The Godfather was the product of a difficult time in Hollywood.  Coppola, Lucas, Murch had fled to San Francisco.  David Niven had compared the movies to Vaudeville; their era was over.  Paramount had sold for $600,000.  Robert Evans brought Paramount back from the brink—Love Story was a big hit.  Paramount had also bought the rights to Puzo’s The Godfather.  Directors who turned it down: Richard Brooks (In Cold Blood), Costa-Gavras (Z), Peter Yates (Bullit), Arthur Penn (Bonnie and Clyde), Sidney Furie, Fred Zinnemann (A Man for all Seasons).  Coppola was reluctant—it was the sort of film he was fleeing from. But Zooetrope was in trouble.  FFC would never have gotten the assignment if the book’s insane popularity had not come later—after he was assigned.  FFC agreed only if he could make it as a story of succession and a metaphor for capitalism.  Casting was a huge fight: Paramount did not want Brando or Pacino.

12 Gangster Film Notes from “Making of The Godfather” & “The Masterpiece That Almost Wasn’t” & “When the Shooting Stopped” (from The Godfather: Supplements DVD) (continued)  Paramount wanted Redford as Michael; they didn’t want it to be a period piece; they didn’t want to film in New York; FFC won all the arguments, all the daily battles.  Paramount was warming up a substitute, convinced FFC was failing.  The dailies of the Michael kills McCluskey/Sollozzo won them over.  Evans wanted more violence in the picture and threatened to bring in a “violence director”—Carlo’s beating of Connie was FFC’s response.  The initial response: Spielberg recalls that it shattered his confidence, convinced he would never be able to make the equal.  David Chase: “I felt like I was seeing my family [on screen] for the first time.”  Kenneth Turan (film critic): a film that improves every time you see it.  The moralistic stance of the Thirties gangster films was gone—a depiction of “the same hypocrisy” (Michael in G2), an examination of power.  FFC knocked down the wall the studios had put up against directors like himself.  The studio (Evans) insisted it would edit if it were one minute over 2:10.  Shown without intermission—a first (Evan’s decision).

13 Gangster Film Notes from “Making of The Godfather” & “The Masterpiece That Almost Wasn’t” & “When the Shooting Stopped” (from The Godfather: Supplements DVD) (continued)  Nino Rota (Fellini’s composer) did the score—Walter Murch’s re-editing the horse’s head scene.  FFC: made G2 in order to make a film about a father and a son at the same age  G2 originally had much more cutting back and forth between the two eras.  Original reviews of G2 were largely negative.  David Chase: “I felt like I was seeing my family [on screen] for the first time.”  Kenneth Turan (film critic): a film that improves every time you see it.  The moralistic stance of the Thirties gangster films was gone—a depiction of “the same hypocrisy” (Michael in G2), an examination of power.  FFC knocked down the wall the studios had put up against directors like himself.  The studio (Evans) insisted it would edit if it were one minute over 2:10.  Shown without intermission—a first (Evan’s decision).  Nino Rota (Fellini’s composer) did the score—Walter Murch’s re-editing the horse’s head scene.  FFC: made G2 in order to make a film about a father and a son at the same age.  G2 originally had much more cutting back and forth between the two eras.  There were 147 squibs on Caan’s body in the toll booth scene.


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