Godfather question: Did anybody back home know that Michael got married while he was in Italy?*

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Vinny123, Jun 7, 2018.

  1. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    That "some guy" was a pedophile. I can't feel sorry for him (the horse yes..but not him).

    I would hope we are not going over the fine points that Vito was a gangster. We both know this.

    What is clear is that holding a gun...is not the same as killing. Pissing pants or not, the trigger was not pulled.

    Vito deals in threats when he can, yes a fine line distinction...but a distinction nonetheless.

    So we have a few examples...shall we start in on Michael's? How about the butchered hookers.
  2. GregM

    GregM Senior Member

    Daddyland, CA
    Again, he didn't lie. He really was not involved in his family's business when he said it.

    So...after declaring up and down the thread that murder is illegal and there's no justification for whacking anyone, you appear to justify the Vito murders but demonize the Michael murders, even though Michael whacked a crooked police chief and a drug overload who were mixed up together. Let's face it: the film is designed to make you identify strongly with Vito and then Michael to show you grey areas and let you explore notions of loyalty, honor, etc. You are ignoring that and pretending that the film simply is about Michael the monster. That's just not accurate.

    Vito was not disgusted by what Michael did. He was disgusted by the others in the family who let Michael get his hands dirty and put himself in danger.

    That makes no sense. Michael really hadn't been involved in the family business when he said "that isn't me." There's a timeline here that you're ignoring.

    You're way off the reservation now. Tom and Vito were planning out Michael's life without consulting Michael. That was a prime motivation in Michael taking control of his own destiny and joining the army. He by the way, he never used that as a "defense" but cited the service to his country to give a broader picture of himself.

    Aside from reminding Frankie that he had sworn an oath of loyalty to the family, Michael really didn't have anything to do with it--it really was between the brothers. The rules of the game were laid down long before Michael became Don. If you break your oath and you have fled or are beyond the reach of the mob, the payback is to hunt down your blood and make you pay that way. As I said before, that's why only paisanos were recruited into the organization, because their roots could be traced back to the old country. All Michael did was remind Frankie of that by flying the brother in from Sicily.

    He knew Kay better than anyone else, I'd say, but like all people trying to hold a marriage together while the spouse isn't trying, he wanted to think that she was as committed to it as him underneath the other issues. As for him controlling Kay or make renewed commitments to go straight or change, those of us who have been in failing marriages know these dynamics well. Doesn't matter if you're the most powerful mob boss in the country or an unemployed nobody--you will do or say pretty much anything to try to hold it all together. And you're sincere. Michael seemed like millions of other men in this kind of situation. He seemed sincere about wanting to make concessions and his issue with control was motivated by saving the family. As soon as he realized he had to let go, he went with a different strategy. This doesn't make him a liar. It makes him a realist.

    I mean, I don't know how to respond to this. She was more interested in him than he was in her at this point in time, so the motivation you're ascribing to Michael simply wasn't there. As I said, he legitimately wasn't aligned or involved in his family's business when he said it and had no intention of becoming involved. So there is no logical explanation you can put forth as to why you're describing this as a lie. You're simply attacking Michael any way you can think to, using both legit and illegitimate criticisms. It would go better for your arguments if you'd stick with the legit criticisms.

    Michael inherited a real mess. The business was under attack from all sides, including from within thanks to people who felt that had some handouts coming to them, and thanks to Fredo's hostility at being passed over. These people were traitors and they had to be punished according to the rules of the game they were playing. In spite of it all, Michael did an amazing job of recognizing the problems and mitigating the risks so that the business could grow. And he had the vision to move his base to Reno so as not to stagnate in New York.

    Yeah, but look at the difference in the wifes' attitudes. Vito brings home a pear and the wife says it's nice and prepares it for dinner. She doesn't ask Vito about his business or place demands or judgments on his troubled shoulders. That's the exact opposite of Kay. So what--what does that mean? It means Vito was in a position where he couldn't lose and Michael was in a position where he couldn't win. Michael did the best he could do, even though it was doomed to be a disaster.

    It's called extortion (not to mention killing another man's livestock). Last time I checked it was illegal. Again, you're being hypocritical by whitewashing Vito's crimes and demonizing Michael for the same types of crimes.

    Ok, so extortion under threat of murder. This you seem to defend?

    Why not start at the beginning? He killed a crooked cop and a drug kingpin. Had Vito done this, you'd be singing his praises.
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  3. Jack Lord

    Jack Lord Forum Resident

    Washington, DC
    Vito Corleone is a criminal. What part of that don't you understand?

    So is Michael as well as Neri, Rocco, Tessio, Barzini, Moe Green, ... All of them, including Fredo.

    You sound like Michael talking to Kay upon returning from Sicily. Only he was more convincing.
  4. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    Yes I know Vito is a criminal what does that have to do with ANYTHING that I said?

    I actually stated that repeatedly. Not sure what I said that deserved your personal attack calling me a liar like Michael to Kay? WTF???...are you implying I am some kind of con artist because I don't agree with you?

    You will have to excuse me, but I thought the 2001 AFI seating question was an oversight , I was mistaken.



    I am not defending or praising Vito's behavior. I am comparing it to Michaels actions.

    You think Michael did the best he could, I don't agree. Doing the best is putting your direct family and your loved ones first. Michael loved power more and that is why he treated his thugs better.

    I don't agree with the notion that I just sing Vito's praises. On the other hand, I don't suppport what Michael does either. You obviously do. Matter of fact, you do so much that you think putting deceptive idea assigning somehow makes your case stronger.

    I don't support what Vito does and I don't support what Michael did in regard to murdering the captain and kingpen.

    If you like Jack Lord equate a threat or a horse head from a pedophile...ok sure....do that.

    I see a world of difference. Not saying any of it is good though and it ceases to be illegal. I am not sure where either of you got this idea.

    It is like Jack Lord getting the idea because I compare one action against another that it is somehow not criminal???

    You said that too...and you appear to be repeating it. Why?

    You can see no difference between Vito and Michael???

    If you compare demonstrated Michaels crimes to Vito's are you ready to start? I'll give you some time to think about it.

    Btw when you post that somehow Kay did wrong by asking about his MURDERING BUSINESS??? Dude that is NORMAL. When you have a sister in law weeping about a MURDERED husband it is normal to ask about that.

    Again, Michael thinks he is the law. He thinks his job is to wipe everybody out...again you ready for the Vito comparison?
  5. ohnothimagen

    ohnothimagen I don't suffer fools or trolls gladly...

    Now that, my friend, is signature worthy!:laugh:
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  6. Phil147

    Phil147 Forum Resident

    York UK
    That is not the reason he got the horse's head in the bed though. Yes, Woltz is not a nice guy and you could say he gets what he deserves but if the Don's Godson had not come to him about the part in the picture Vito would never have done anything to Woltz, regardless of his personal habits.

    These are all ruthless people, I would agree with you to some extent Michael appears to be more ruthless than Vito (certainly what we see in the films) but ultimately we are trying to understand the mindset of people who operate on a completely different moral code to us. I mean if my Godson came to me and said this guy won't give me a job, I'm not going to put a horse's head in that guy's bed, I'm going to tell my Godson go get another job :D
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  7. Phil147

    Phil147 Forum Resident

    York UK
    'just my enemies -- that's all.' ;)

    Of course we can question who he thinks his enemies are and whether they truly fit that description.
  8. Phil147

    Phil147 Forum Resident

    York UK
    Be a bit of a shock for the housemaid...
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  9. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    While I agree that the motivation is for the Godfather to do something with an end goal, I don't think they make it any secret that Vito has a disdain for "this..movie producer", in the entirety of this time of person that would have someone blacklisted because of personal feelings.

    You see the picture is painted in the flashback in the book (which leads to the Fanucci stuff in the Godfather II where an affection toward a singer plays into his "business" mentality) in that there is an idea that power should dictate personal relationships. Is it a stretch that Vito would see a kind of unhealthy control behavior using power to the extent of obsession? That is the beauty of the movies, subtlety in looks, complicated interweaving of stories...all that.

    So back to the pedophile thing. I made an observation that the horse's head was a light sentence for the pedophile. That is MY VIEW. While the posters above take it that I think it is ok, or that it is not criminal, nothing could be further from the truth. However, to compare that to say an innocent woman being butchered in bed (and I have no doubt this was the work of Michael) just to scare a Senator is so low. I don't know how anyone could equate a young girl to a frickin' horse. Not that I don't love animals and find both acts revolting, it is just that murder is a little bit higher of a crime.

    Even with Luca and the band leader. The threat of murder is not murder, and it is sad that some people do not know the difference and will attack me personally for saying so? Comparing me to Michael Corleone himself??

    I agree, and I contrary to some people's beliefs, I am judging Michael compared to Vito and not the rest of the world. There is no question that the movies are designed to look a little closer at the mindset of the individual and understand that in the end, they are still people.

    While I have compared the things that Michael has done to make a point, that doesn't mean I lack empathy. In the case of his behavior to Kay, do I understand him losing his temper? Do I understand him talking to her gain control? Of course...but to go a step further and defend it? Uh no.

    Kay for example is made to look like some kind of enemy with the previous poster because she asks civilized questions. This is seen as somehow adding stress to Michael and makes her less of a wife? LOL. If Michael has stress, it is perfectly clear that he has taken no steps to make sure that doesn't happen.

    Again, he has mastered the vicious and power with zero interest in the nurturing aspect. Kay was young and dumb and it shows when she quickly just gets in the car after Michael comes back. While Michael uses that to full advantage, as others have pointed out, that wasn't to last. I say GOOD. She wised up, and she is not a villain for it. It is Michael that has acted subhuman, and in the totality of things, I don't think it would have made Vito proud.

    To the other posters, you think Vito would have made that decision to off Fredo? That is his SON. No way.



    I am re-tackling this because I want to answer this more thoroughly now that I have more time...so excuse some redundancy.

    I painted a picture of patterns, and I am saying in hindsight, yes this is one more lie to the pile. You choose to jettison what I have laid out, cool, but I think my points are "legit" even if you don't think so. Agree to disagree on that.

    Why do you make such generalizations? I never said that at all. I said that Michael has acted like a monster and has become a monster of a human being. I am referring to his distorted sociopathic/psychopathic path. If the movie was just about Michael, there wouldn't be all the flashbacks to Vito etc. Not sure where you got this crap.

    Say what? Where did I ever say that he was disgusted by Michael? Again, just tacking things on. I think Vito was disgusted by how things have got so out of control while he is laying flat on his back. I really wish you would look closer at things I have written instead of assuming anything like that. I think anyone that supports this view is supporting a distortion of what I actually wrote.

    I explained this. I am well aware of the timeline. The scary thing is that you are making a post insinuating that I have no idea of this fact?

    Actually it is clear that he took a college deferment before the fact, not after. You miss this point? He went to college which implies that he was drafted first. If he was already in college he could have just taken a deferment anyway. I think this point is pretty clear. Regardless of how it happened, Michael oblivious or not, took that opportunity. If I am to guess, Michael may have been a little peeved knowing that his not getting drafted was an instrument of those that made sure it didn't happen.

    You know that he reads it at the hearing, and you know that he is doing anything he can to lie and wiggle out of trouble. When he cites his service (that all involved are well aware of and actually make it clear...we are talking about the federal government who have been watching him a long time...I am sure they were well aware of who he is!), he is doing so just like the lies that he is telling where he makes it look like he is such a minor player with "some stocks" in vegas hotels instead of the powerful man he is behind the scenes. C'mon man, I know you understand this. Michaels service is up for whoredom just like any other tool he uses at his disposal. Pretty shameful if you ask me.

    Again, I could actually carbon paste the post above. Convenient that "just between the brothers", was at his hearing. If it was "just between the brothers" why not have it out in private? The design was to either shame him into not talking (using the surprise element) or threaten his brother by standing directly behind him and beside him.

    But here is the key. All this was true whether his brother turned up or not. Frank would know this. What is key is Michael showing up as a threat. You think it is an accident that a brother is being brought in while a brother dies at the end of the movie? Do you not see it clearly?? When Michael says it is "just between the brothers" it is a LIE and all of us here know it. There is no sugar coating this. Kay saw through it, and the viewers are meant to see through it too. Michael lies and lies and lies and lies...is this any secret?

    No that actually isn't true. If you love someone sometimes you gotta let that person go. The successful people recognize this and stop fighting the person's will, and they find that they get that person back by building a foundation of trust, not control.

    The first steps in making that person defend you is to make yourself out to be the "bad guy" that the person perceives. In other words, if you balloon up their perception then it makes them defend you.

    Michael was like a child in this capacity and that is why he hit her. Like a little baby that doesn't get his way, he throws a tantrum because he has found something that he cannot control. Again, this shows his lack of relationship skills that is clearly sprinkled throughout the movie.

    I know it sucks, but if someone is calling you an ass, recognizing that, admitting it, and then going their way tends to make them not fight you anymore...and if one does it to an over extend magnifying every flaw, then you find them defending you! While it may seem manipulating, the truth is that it is based on a foundation of truth because you are looking inward instead of blaming.

    Michael failed this in every regard. Kay was pretty darn patient through the years obviously. Hence Michael and his little child like tantrum.

    Again, you seem to be taking it to a personal level, but to say something back....only the naive ones. The successful people that hold a marriage together understand the #1 rule. To truly love someone is to try to understand how they feel. If Kay was feeling betrayed (and rightfully so) by being deceived at every turn, the key is not to keep deceiving. If Kay is saying that he is controlling her like a dog (which he was with his childish "over" and "allowing her to leave" crap), then the first step is to stop wouldn't ya think?

    You don't just say or do pretty much anything. That is the tool of inexperience. When one has gone through a few relationship breakups, you get hip. Michael's experience in this regards is next to nothing, and it shows painfully so. Of course like any Roman type dictator/emperor that inherited wealth without earning it, this concept will be lost on them.

    Michael in lots of ways is a like a Caligula type (all the power, but none of the maturity). While obviously not a crazy lunatic like that, but still models are models...and this story has been told time and time again.

    He is a proven liar, and he didn't care about how others felt. Why would he thinks he has to let go at that moment? When you are dealing with people, anything is possible. Again, this strikes home that he is ruled by emotion and what he thinks, not what others feel about it. Is this not clear? He went with a different strategy in the exact moment because he has no people skill like his father has. Take the rent dude getting all upset and Vito "reasoning" with him despite being threatened. He calmed down the irate guy and actually made examples that humanized him and compared him with himself. No difference huh?

    Out of all the things you have said, this one has got to be the one. I am not "attacking" Michael anymore then me calling a criminal a criminal is an "attack" on them. When I say he is a liar, the "attack" is simply saying what is true. In this case I explained my stance using examples. I do not see where Kay is more interested in him then him to her....they are at his family's house no? If she was more interested, wouldn't he be at her family's house? He is taking her to sell her on a future, AND he is actually defending his family. Of course while he is pretty forthright, the undercurrent is a deception. While it is not clear to me then, I think in hindsight it shows his pattern throughout his life. While you may not agree with this, I see no reason to say that I am "attacking" Michael because I am stating what I believe to be true. Your assertion that my argument is not "legit" would be like me putting down naive thoughts. You are coming from a place, and so am I. You should respect that, even if you don't agree with it. While I disagree with you, I don't say anything you say is not "legit". Actually there are lots of things you have said that make me think about the nuances of the movie, and that accounts for a lot.

    Or Michael helped make more of a mess. Depends on how you look at it I guess. Gangster stuff is nasty business, no question that the foundation of evil is hard to sustain.

    While I covered this, I will say it again. I don't praise Vito, but I do recognize that he had better relationship skills which is what the Godfather is about more than any of the violence or the clinical way that Michael ran everything. You applaud this, and I think that is terribly missing the point. When the credits role, I think it is clear that Michael is the farthest thing from "success" and his existence is a death sentence to isolation forever.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
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  10. The Panda

    The Panda Forum Mutant

    Marple, PA, USA
    No, it's negotiating tactic. Art of the Deal!
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  11. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    The funny thing is that I don't think anyone here including me has called it a great business ethic? Geez talking about distortion.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018
  12. Chazro

    Chazro Forum Resident

    West Palm Bch, Fl.
    So....IF we replaced Michael with Sonny, and HE lived thru the bedroom assassination attempt and everything else that happens, does Sonny kill Fredo? My knee-jerk answer would be no but.....
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  13. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    I don't think Fredo would have happened at all. Sonny is an entirely different beast. No "kid" brother arguement. Plus I see Sonny taking care of him better.
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  14. Phil147

    Phil147 Forum Resident

    York UK
    Sonny wasn't much more fit to be Don than Fredo was. He was too hot headed, Vito himself recognized this. You are right though in terms of inheritance Sonny was next in line so there could be no argument about been 'passed over'.
    Fredo would have still been sent out of the way to Nevada though, this happened when the Don was still alive. He was sent there to recuperate and set up the Casino business but in reality it was probably just to get him out of the way, as much as Sonny would love Fredo as a brother I don't think he would have been very impressed with his performance when his father got hit. Whether this would have lead to Fredo becoming embittered with his lot and becoming a 'threat' to the family we will never know.
    Also Michael would have still been 'in the family' he would still have whacked Sollozo and McClusky and 'made his bones' so even if Sonny lived and became Don Michael would have been involved in the day to day running of the business and most likely above Fredo in the pecking order.
  15. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    But here is the thing, wasn't the move to Nevada dependent on the heads of family's massacre?

    I think the moves against Vito were dependent on Michael being underestimated as Don.

    In this alternate universe of Sonny living he would have to be onto Carlo and listenening more to Tom....so in lots of ways it makes Fredo less important.

    Carlo was a sucker punch based on Vito's words of Barzini out witting him.

    Regardless in this world of Sonny living...as Fredo ages he feels less slighted because Sonny is Don and hopefully Sonny takes care of him as a closer brother does.

    The dynamics are so diffferent because they grew up together. I think of dinner scene where Sonny backs off of Fredo in the play boxing. That is what I see happening in life. A little knudge here and there to check up on him...or out and out bringing him back.

    You made me think about it and I don't have any doubts that Sonny wouldn't be happy with the Moe Green thing....but same scenerio with Sonny....Tom is closer...Fredo is closer....no alienation...the slap down of "taking sides"....never happens...or at worst Sonny with a quick shut up and Fredo go show Rocco(or whoever is standing near) the slot machine tree...lol
  16. Chazro

    Chazro Forum Resident

    West Palm Bch, Fl.
    ...this was one aspect of the Godfather that didn't seem right or logical. The idea that master strategist; Vito Corleone, didn't realize, until THAT meeting, that "...it was Barzini..." never sounded right to me. If Tataglia was just 'a pimp', figuring out who was behind him should've been child's play!
  17. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    I think Tattaglia was his main interest because they had history, and you can see with the arguing about Vito's power and the fear of more killing for revenge.

    I think Vito had no respect about Tattaglia in war situations, and Barzini pushing the negotiations made it obvious.

    The question wasn't who, so much...but the fact that two families were playing against them. Of course the key is that Barzini was more of the lead and it was all the heads that are designing the situation.

    Regardless, I think the figuring out wasn't completely clear until that meeting. That is how I took it. Why do you think it is so obvious it was Barzini? Why not another family head before that meeting?
  18. Luke The Drifter

    Luke The Drifter Forum Resident

    United States
    I think the fishing was something he had done with the boy regularly. I don’t think he had a clue.
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  19. Phil147

    Phil147 Forum Resident

    York UK
    If only Vito had lived longer he could have written one of those self help books successful business dudes do... 'How to get ahead in business' or something... :hide:
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  20. ohnothimagen

    ohnothimagen I don't suffer fools or trolls gladly...

    Either Your Name Or Your Brains Go On The Contract, by Vito Corleone, the new book by the author of My Father's Name Was Andolini and Let Us Reason Together...:D
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  21. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    I am holding out for the Clemenza cook book. "Shove in All Your Sausage and Your Meatballs...Take the Cannoli"
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  22. ElevatorSkyMovie

    ElevatorSkyMovie Forum Resident

    That sounds like the title of an adult movie.
  23. Hardy Melville

    Hardy Melville Forum Resident

    New York
    I know what you are driving at here, but Tataglia might have been supported by some other of the families than Barzini. Barzini might have known about that, too, but from the Corleone perspective that didn't necessarily require that it was Barzini who backed up Tataglia.

    Here's the thing - whether he was right or wrong on it, (and given what eventually happened to the five families in New York and how public pressure on them did come a lot from the perspective they were behind a big chunk of the drug trade) it's clear to me Vito really believed it was a mistake for his family to get into the drug business. Thinking he was right, he came to the meeting to explain that, and probably hoped the others would agree. But at the meeting he saw that Barzini did not agree, and more than that seemed to have Tataglia's back.

    Vito no doubt went to the meeting with the intent of trying to determine what role the other families had, including Barzini. He got his answer at the meeting.
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  24. BEAThoven

    BEAThoven Forum Resident

    New Jersey
    The crucial scene for all of this is when Michael and the baker (forget his name -- he comes to visit the Don when Michael is panicking because all protection has been removed) through posture and "acting" get the hitmen to stand down after arriving at the hospital. The baker's hands are shaking (he's was clearly extremely nervous and anxious about the whole scenario as most of us would be) , but Michael is completely calm. At this point Michael realizes, "Perhaps, this is the life for me."
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2018
  25. genesim

    genesim Forum Resident

    St. Louis
    Hey hey hey...no need for lewd. That was the furthest thing from my mind. :angel:

    Besides Clemenza always makes me hungry during that part!

    I think being a decorated war vet and his demeanor, it wasn't so much life for him, but the fact that he had a duty to protect his father.

    Though I do think he enjoyed some things just a little too much. I question his sanity on many occasions.

    I agree with this one completely. I think Vito's health was failing and it wasn't helped by the idea of being forced into a drug trade, or more importantly what he had to do to stay out of it.

    Vito was a man of his time, and his time was running out. I think Michael getting involved didn't help either. When Michael says "will get there pop", it is the most touching things that Michael ever said to me.

    Pacino has never lost it to me. He has me at the diner hit, to the part at the end of Danny Collins where they are waiting for the news. Dude is an acting beast.
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