The Godfather

Release Date: March 24th, 1972

DVD Release Date: May 11th, 2004

R |2 hr 57 min

Plot Summary

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.

Cast: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Richard S. Castellano, Robert Duvall, Sterling Hayden, John Marley, Richard Conte

Director: Francis Ford Coppola

Genres: Drama , Crime drama

Production Co: Paramount Pictures

Distributors: Paramount Pictures

Keywords: Family , Love , Murder , Intense , New York City , Revenge , Wife , Father , Transformation , Rise , Son , Brooding , Passionate , 1940s ,

Ratings & Reviews

  • 100
    Michael WilmingtonChicago Tribune

    Brando made Don Vito something we rarely see in movies: a tragicomic villain-hero, a vulnerable hood. The don is so close to a comic character -- the movie itself is so close to comedy -- that Brando's capacity to move us in the role is doubly impressive. At the end, it is the older Godfather's tenderness and sagacity we recall. [21 Mar 1997, Friday, p.A]

  • 100
    The Hollywood Reporter

    Director Francis Ford Coppola, with a strong assist from cameraman Gordon Willis, has done an extraordinary job of capturing period and place. show more

  • 100
    Roger EbertChicago Sun-Times

    The wedding sequence... is a virtuoso stretch of filmmaking: Coppola brings his large cast onstage so artfully that we are drawn at once into the Godfather's world. show more

See all critic reviews on


Nominated Costume Design
Winner Writing (Screenplay - Based on Material From Another Medium)
Winner Best Original Score - Motion Picture
Nominated Costume Design
British Academy of Film & Television Arts (1973)
Winner Anthony Asquith Memorial Award
British Academy of Film & Television Arts (1973)
Nominated Sound
Winner Best Motion Picture - Drama
Winner Best Screenplay - Motion Picture
Winner Best Picture
Nominated Directing
Winner Best Director - Motion Picture
Nominated Film Editing