My Film Notes: The Godfather Part III (1990) directed by Francis Ford Coppola [Updated 28/8/2021]


US / 162 min / Color / Paramount Pictures, Zoetrope Studios. Dir: Francis Ford Coppola. Pro: Francis Ford Coppola. Scr: Mario Puzo and Francis Ford Coppola based on The Godfather by Mario Puzo. Cin: Gordon Willis. Mus: Carmine Coppola. Cast: Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, Talia Shire, Andy García, Eli Wallach, Joe Mantegna, Bridget Fonda, George Hamilton, Sofia Coppola. Synopsis: In this third film in the epic Corleone trilogy, Al Pacino reprises the role of powerful family leader Michael Corleone. Now in his 60’s, Michael is dominated by two passions: freeing his family from crime and finding a suitable successor. That successor could be fiery Vincent (Garcia) … but he may also be the spark that turns Michael’s hope of business legitimacy into an inferno of mob violence. [Paramount Pictures]. Release dates: 20 December 1990 (Beverly Hills, California) (premiere); 25 December 1990 (United States); 8 March 1991 (UK); 1 March 1991(Spain). Spanish title: El padrino: Parte III. IMDb Rating: 7.6/10.

imagenGrande1The Godfather Part III is a 1990 American crime film produced and directed by Francis Ford Coppola from the screenplay co-written with Mario Puzo. The film stars Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, Talia Shire, and Andy García, Eli Wallach, Joe Mantegna, Bridget Fonda, George Hamilton, and Sofia Coppola. It is the third and final installment in The Godfather trilogy. A sequel to The Godfather (1972) and The Godfather Part II (1974), it concludes the story of Michael Corleone, the patriarch of the Corleone family, who attempts to legitimize his criminal empire. The film also includes fictionalized accounts of two real-life events: the 1978 death of Pope John Paul I and the Papal banking scandal of 1981–1982, both linked to Michael Corleone’s business affairs. (Wikipedia)

The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture. (Wikipedia)

The Godfather Part III at the American Film Institute Catalog

While not in the same league as the first two instalments in the series, The Godfather: Part III is not without its own merits.

In December 2020, Coppola completed a long-discussed new edit of The Godfather Part III, just in time for the film’s 30th anniversary. The project, with the title Mario Puzo’s The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone, has a length of 158 minutes in comparison with the  original 162 minutes. The one impactful change is the new opening scene.I look forward to seeing the new version soon.

5 thoughts on “My Film Notes: The Godfather Part III (1990) directed by Francis Ford Coppola [Updated 28/8/2021]”

  1. Did you watch the theatrical version or Coppola’s recent recut called The Godfather Coda? I don’t watch films much anymore, but I was interested to find out what changes he made.

      1. It’ll be interesting to see if it’s an improvement. Coppola famously complained about lack of time (esp. editing), and there were casting problems. Paramount wouldn’t pay Duvall, so Coppola had to get George Hamilton. I’m sure George is a nice guy, but he’s not Robert Duvall. When Winona Ryder dropped out, Coppola cast his daughter. She had little time preparation and got hammered for her performance. The whole thing seemed to be rushed as if the window of opportunity to make it was short.

        The best thing about the film (IMHO) is Willis’s camerawork. It blends in well with the first two, though each ‘chapter’ is slightly different.

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