The joy of Blu-Ray (as well as other previous format changes) comes with the formation of a personal canon. There are films you like; films you like very much, but there are only a limited number of films that you are willing to pay to have in three separate formats: VHS, DVD and now Blu-Ray. The Godfather has sat on the shelf for a few months now, waiting its moment and last Saturday I finally got a chance to watch it. Would it be controversial to say this is a great film? I marveled specifically at Pacino. Brando is brilliant, he does the little things to humanize his Don Corleone who is now more a grandfather than a gangster. His exasperation and weariness is evident from the beginning. All the other actors do their bit, but Pacino, in his first major screen role, is a genius. His quietness and his isolation is there from the beginning. Right from the party, this is a man who knows he can take over whenever he wants. He won't wait for promotion; he wants no time kicking his heels in middle management; he has his eye on the top spot. Look at the way he holds back the taking of the family photograph and then introduces Kay into the picture. He is the director, genuinely his own man. When he improvises at the hospital, he notes with a quick look of self-revelation that his hand isn't shaking. He was to the manner born. The murder of the police chief is undertaken with the minimum of fuss, his only mistake not dropping the gun instantly, as if he wants to keep hold of it, now that it is in his hand. More controversial than Brando's no show at the Oscars was Pacino's nomination as Best Supporting Actor. Hadn't they seen the film?
8/10/2013 10:39:08 am
I enjoyed reading your blog, thank you.
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John Bleasdale is a writer. His work has appeared in The Guardian, The Independent, Il Manifesto, as well as CineVue.Com and theStudioExec.com. He has also written a number of plays, screenplays and novels.