The Godfather (1972) is a crime film directed by Francis Ford Coppola from a screenplay by Mario Puzo and Coppola. The movie stars Marlon Brando ( Vito Corleone) and Al Pacino (Michael Corleone) as the leaders of a fictional New York crime family. The story spans the years 1945-55, centering on the transformation of Michael from reluctant family outsider to ruthless Mafia boss while chronicling the Corleones under the patriarch Vito.
Vito’s godson Johnny Fontane, a popular singer, pleads for help in securing a coveted movie role
Michael thwarts a second assassination attempt on his father at the hospital; his jaw is broken by Police Captain McCluskey, who is also Sollozzo’s bodyguard. Sonny (James Caan) retaliates for the attacks on his father by having Tattaglia’s son killed. Michael comes up with a plan to hit Sollozzo and McCluskey: on the pretext of settling the dispute, Michael accepts their offer to meet in a Bronx restaurant, retrieves a planted handgun, and murders them.
Sonny attacks his brother-in-law Carlo on the street for abusing his sister Connie and threatens to kill him if he abuses her again. When it happens again, Sonny speeds for her home but assassins ambush him at a highway toll booth and riddle him with submachine gun fire.
The meeting is set for the same day as the christening of Connie’s son, to whom Michael will stand as godfather. As the christening proceeds, Corleone assassins, acting on Michael’s orders, murder the other New York dons and Moe Greene.
The film was for a time the highest grossing picture ever made, and remains the box office leader for 1972. It won three Oscars that year: Best Picture, Best Actor (Brando) and in the category Best Adapted Screenplay for Puzo and Coppola. Its nominations in seven other categories included Pacino, James Caan and Robert Duvall for Best Supporting Actor and Coppola for Best Director. The success spawned two sequels: The Godfather Part II in 1974, and The Godfather Part III in 1990.