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#1
Old 08-20-2001, 04:03 PM
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So apparently, eveyone's been watching The Godfather movies on AMC lately. Can you believe that I, a 30 year old movie buff, hadn't seen any Godfather movies until last week? It was one of those things where everyone else had seen it so no one ever wanted to rent it. You know. But anyway, on to my question.

I was at a party on Saturday night and got into a heated argument with a number of people about the death of Sonny Corleone in the first movie and the subsequent rubbing out of Carlos, husband of the Corlenoe sister who's name escapes me at the moment. Carlos was killed because he allegedly set up Sonny. But how? The timing of the events is rather tricky. My fellow partygoers and I hashed out three possibilities:

1) Carlos is contacted by rival mobsters who make him an offer he can't refuse. He agrees to betray Sonny, with whom he is angry anyways because he beat him for the beating of his wife. Carlos arranges for his girlfriend (or some other mob-affiliated girl) to call when he knows his wife will be home. The wife gets predictably angry. Carlos uses this as a pretext to give her a sound thrashing which he knows will enrage Sonny beyond reason. Sonny responds by attempting to make good on his threat and is met by the machine gun folks who have been lying in wait at the toll booth. PROBLEM: this is a terribly elaborate plan and requires a lot of things to go just right for it to work.

2) Carlos girlfriend's call is a mistake. The fight that ensues is totally spontaneous. Carlos flys off the hook and beats his wife. She calls Sonny. Carlos is scared out of his wits because he knows Sonny will come to kill him. He calls the rival mob who puts the machine gun folks in place to rub out Sonny. PROBLEM: There doesn't seem to be enough time between the domestic violence and the toll booth attack for the machine gunners to get into place.

3) Same as above, except that Carlos doesn't call the rival mob at all. They have been lying in wait for Corleones at the toll booth ever since the Corleones holed up in their compound, and it just happened to be Sonny who set off their trap. PROBLEM: This makes Carlos innocent, or at least as innocent as wife-beating scum can be.

So, Godfather fanatics, which is it?
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#2
Old 08-20-2001, 04:09 PM
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I don't have a problem with "terribly elaborate plan"s that require "a lot of things to go just right for it to work" and, given how the movie ends, neither did Mario Puzo.

And it's Carlo, by the way.
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#3
Old 08-20-2001, 04:11 PM
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I've been under the impression that Carlo was upset that the Corleones were not giving him any responsiblity. So the other families (most likely Barzini's) offered him some money if he would help set up Sonny.
#4
Old 08-20-2001, 04:14 PM
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You've analyzed this far too much. I don't think Barzini trusted Carlo any more than the don Corlenoe did. Carlo was just used as a pawn in the plan to off Sonny. I'm sure the girlfriend call was a setup as a real girlfriend would have known better than to call the house and arouse suspcicion. The logistics wouldn't have been easy but that's an element of all movies. I doubt if there would be any daylight hours with virtually no traffic on the causeway.
#5
Old 08-20-2001, 04:19 PM
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FWIW the Corleone sister was Constanzia, "Connie", played by the director's sister Talia Shire. Thank God she can act better than the director's daughter.

Looks like three out of three Godfather buffs agree on your OP
#6
Old 08-20-2001, 04:28 PM
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Padeye, I don't remember seeing Sofia Coppola in any of the things listed on her IMDb filmography, but if she's a worse actress than Talia Shire, I'll be sure to avoid her in the future.
#7
Old 08-20-2001, 04:33 PM
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She only had background parts in the first two Godfather movies but was an albatross around the neck of Pt. III. Winona Ryder was picked to play Mary Corleone but had to pull out.
#8
Old 08-27-2001, 03:35 PM
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There have been several Godfather threads lately, but I decided to post this here, as it's the shortest. Mike did not kill the leaders of the other 4 families. Or if he did they have new leaders. There are still 5 families; http://organizedcrime.about.com/libr.../aa082001a.htm
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#9
Old 08-27-2001, 04:54 PM
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There was never a real Michael Corleone. The whole thing is fiction, with some pieces modelled on real events.
#10
Old 08-27-2001, 05:41 PM
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I personally agree with option (1)
#11
Old 08-27-2001, 06:09 PM
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SPOILERS

Carlo admits to Michael that he and Tataglia set Santino up. No real mob girlfriend would call her mobster at home. This one must have said something very intimate about Carlo to set Connie off.

"Look what they have done. They have massacred my son."
#12
Old 08-27-2001, 08:45 PM
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I don't think option 1 implies all that elaborate of a plan. Earlier in the film, Sonny had driven up to Carlo's bookie joint, chased Carlo down, and beaten him in the street all the while screaming about how he (Carlo) had beaten up his (Sonny's) sister. So Barzini figures that all he has to do is to set things in motion such that Sonny goes through the same pattern of behavior. Probably the only reason he needed to contact Carlo at all was to make sure that the hapless brother-in-law did a good job of beating up Connie this time, instead of holding back because of his continued fear of Sonny.

BTW, notice that Sonny's lack of control over his emotions set up his own death and the gunning down and near-death of his father. It's interesting to contrast that with the utter emotionlessness of Michael later on: think about the cold look Michael gives Neri as he finally embraces Fredo at their mother's funeral at the end of Godfather Part II.
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#13
Old 08-27-2001, 08:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by waterj2

There was never a real Michael Corleone. The whole thing is fiction, with some pieces modelled on real events.
Hey, I know that. I guess I should have put a smiley face. I didn't think anyone would take me seriously.
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