The Godfather Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone Blu Ray Review (Paramount)
The Godfather Part III (aKa Mario Puzo’s The Godfather Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone) is a 1990 crime film produced, co-written, & directed by Francis Ford Coppola (The Godfather 1/2, Apocalypse Now, Rumble Fish, The Cotton Club, The Conversation, & Bram Stoker’s Dracula). It follows The Godfather & The Godfather Part Two, it’s the end of the franchise. It was co-written by author Mario Puzo (The Godfather 1/2, The Last Don, Earthquake, Superman II, & The Sicilian). It was produced by Gray Frederickson (The Godfather 1/2, Hit!, The Outsiders, UHF, Apocalypse Now, & South of Heaven, West of Hell). It was nominated for seven Academy Awards. The budget was $54 million & it grossed $136.8 million worldwide at the box office. This director’s cut was re-edited under it’s original title “Mario Puzo’s The Godfather Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone” 30 years later for this home video release & brand new theatrical screenings!!!!
In 1979, Michael Corleone (played by: Al Pacino from The Godfather 1/2, Heat, Scarface, & Dog Day Afternoon) is approaching 60. Tormented with guilt over his ruthless rise to power, especially for having ordered the assassination of someone close to him. He donates millions to charitable causes to feel better about his dark past. Michael & Kay (played by: Diane Keaton from The Godfather 1/2, Father of the Bride franchise, Annie Hall, & Reds) are now divorced. Their children Anthony (played by: Franc D’Ambrosio) & Mary (played by: Sofia Coppola from The Godfather 1/2, Anna, The Cotton Club, & Peggy Sue Got Married) live with Kay. Anthony tells his father that he is leaving law school to become an opera singer. Vincent Mancini (played by: Andy Garcia from Ocean’s franchise, Internal Affairs, Black Rain, & Smokin’ Aces), the illegitimate son of Michael’s brother Sonny arrives at the reception. Michael’s sister Connie (played by: Talia Shire from The Godfather 1/2, The Rocky franchise, Windows, & Prophecy) arranges for Vincent to settle a dispute with his rival Joey Zasa (played by: Joe Mantegna from Thinner, Criminal Minds, House of Games, & Jerry and Tom). Michael is troubled by Vincent’s fiery temper yet impressed by his loyalty so he agrees to include Vincent in the family business. Michael offers $600 million to Archbishop Gilday (played by: Donal Donnelly from The Dead, Twister, & This is my Father) in exchange for shares in Internazionale Immobiliare. He makes a tender offer to buy the Vatican’s 25% share in the company, which will give him controlling interest. He’s trying his best to be legit & get away from crime these days. Don Altobello (played by: Eli Wallach from The Magnificent Seven, The Sentinel, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, & The Good, the Bad and the Ugly), a New York Mafia boss tries to get a piece of the deal but gets denied. Michael pays The Commission from the sale of his Las Vegas holdings & makes sure that Zasa receives nothing from it. Most of the mob bosses are killed during a double cross soon after with very few surviving. Michael realizes who is the traitor but suffers a diabetic stroke before he can do anything about it. Vincent & Mary begin a forbidden romance. The family goes to Sicily for Anthony’s operatic debut in Palermo at the Teatro Massimo. Michael deals with his traitor while he’s on their family trip. Michael sees that Vincent has changed man & names him the new Don of the Corleone family in return for ending his romance with Mary. The Corleone Family is forced to watch their back as their enemies prepare to strike again. Can they survive once again? or Is their legacy about to be over????The Godfather Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone may only be 6 minutes shorter when it comes to the total running length but it has all kinds of changes to it to make this a brand new viewing experience when it comes to the controversial Godfather Part 3. It has a completely different opening now with the flashbacks from the other two films gone. It has more of a modern look to it with the original golden tint it had removed. A few scenes are either or changed here including an earlier introduction to the Vincent character plus the ending is different. First off, I’ve always enjoyed this sequel unlike lots of people which I do understand because the first two features were damn near perfect & this one definitely isn’t but it really stands on it’s own when it comes to the trilogy. It’s a whole new world when this takes place & the older characters are trying to deal with that. This re-cut gives the movie a way better pace & flow with it’s changes. Al Pacino is amazing in III, it’s honestly one of his greatest performances in his entire legendary career. The script has some real memorable material, as you know one part that The Sopranos played homage to all the time during it’s run on HBO. Diane Keaton & Talia Shire both returned here, it gave a familiar vibe when it came to the other films. Andy Garcia, Joe Mantegna, & Eli Wallach were the new major additions to The Godfather universe for this final chapter, they elevated the material for it. Especially Andy Garcia, this is my personal favorite role & performance from him. He reminded me of the earlier Michael in the original films. The villains here made you want Michael to go back to his dark past. Sofia Coppola is still the biggest flaw out of this production. She’s obviously a talented director now but she should have never tried to act. Her role was too big for her & she couldn’t handle it. I thought Franc D’Ambrosio was decent but it could have been given to a better actor also for such a large role but I am guessing he got the gig because of his singing talents. The Godfather Part III is loaded with talent when it comes to the supporting cast that includes George Hamilton, Bridget Fonda, Richard Bright, John Savage, Al Ruscio, Michael Bowen, & Brett Halsey. It doesn’t hold back on the violence & it gets really dark at times. I think more people will appreciate this sequel more after seeing this director’s cut. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!Let’s talk about the high definition presentation & special feature from Paramount Pictures! This 1080p (1.85:1) transfer looks stunning. The restoration of this director’s cut blows away all the other previous versions. It’s like watching it for the very time as far as the material goes. It has a huge variety of audio options which includes English: Dolby TrueHD 5.1, French: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1, Spanish: Dolby Digital 5.1, German: Dolby Digital 5.1, Italian: Dolby Digital 5.1, & Japanese: Dolby Digital 5.1 on this brand new home video release. The audio is top notch on this updated version of The Godfather Part 3. This is the best it’s ever sounded on any format. All of the dialogue is crystal clear, the action is elevated, & the classic score has a killer boost to it. It also has English, English SDH, French, French SDH, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish, Arabic, Cantonese, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Hindi, Korean, Mandarin (Simplified), Mandarin (Traditional), Norwegian, Romanian, & Swedish subtitles. Like always, Paramount kills it in the technical department. Director Francis Ford Coppola have a brand new “Intro” for this The Godfather Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone version that’s a little over a minute. He explains that this was the original title. He goes a little over his experience of making it. He talks about some of the changes made to this version. It also has a slipcover & a digital code. It’s available everywhere right now, CHECK IT OUT!!!!