(Review originally written at 5 November 2009)

As far as sequels are concerned; they just don't get any better than this. As a matter of fact "The Godfather: Part II" even ranks above the sublime "The Godfather", which got made 2 years earlier, starring mostly the same cast.

The movie connects nicely with the first movie and decides to start off were the first movie had finished. Michael is the new Don now and he continues his father work by leading a crime syndicate based in New York. Besides the usual struggles with other the other families and other characters who are looking for opportunities to gain more power and control, Michael also needs to handle his personal life with his wife and his other family members, who aren't all on the same line.

But "The Godfather: Part II" is not just a movie that continues what the first movie had started. It also adds a story-line of the young Vito Corleone, played in the first movie by Marlon Brando. In this movie he is being portrayed by Robert De Niro, who wasn't really a big star yet at the time. It's amazing how these two different story-lines, set at completely different time periods and also in essence have really nothing to do with each other, blend in so perfectly. The historical settings of the New York of the early 20th century are also truly impressive.

It's a movie that got practically made by the same cast and crew as the first successful movie. Of course there also are some new addition to the cast this time, in which the earlier mentioned Robert De Niro and Lee Strasberg impress the most. Both also received an Oscar nomination in the category for best supporting actor, along with Michael V. Gazzo but it was Robert De Niro who would eventually take the statue back home.

What also makes this movie an even better one than its predecessor is the fact that this movie is filled with some classic moments of cinema. It contains some of the best known sequences and phrases. It also contains some great constructed and build-up sequences, for which the credit really needs to go to Francis Ford Coppola. Also the characters are more developed and expanded in this movie. A true accomplishment for a movie with so many characters in it but then again the movie has also more than 3 hours to tell its story.

A sequel that even surpasses its brilliant predecessor.


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About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
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