There’s been some suspicion about the way some studios have shovelled back catalogue movies onto the Blu-ray format without taking the time to genuinely enhanced the picture and sound quality of the productions to make such a format upgrade worthwhile. You can aim no such qualms at Paramount Pictures with its sublime Godfather Trilogy
box set, which takes arguably cinema’s most acclaimed trilogy of films (well, the first two anyway), and gives them a useful lick of paint.
The highlight of the set, as you’d expect, remains Francis Ford Coppola’s astounding trilogy itself, a studious, gripping, cross-generational tale of the Corleone family. The first two films richly deserved their many Oscar wins, and while the third is considerably weaker, it’s still not short of many impressive moments. The Godfather Trilogy
is certainly one of cinema’s most impressive achievements to date.
The Blu-ray set reflects the muted palette that director Francis Ford Coppola opted for in making the films, and inevitably contrasted with a modern day big-budget blockbuster, the visual transfer isn’t going to be listed as a 1080p poster child. Yet, in perspective, this is still an excellent transfer, offering a sizable upgrade over the DVDs and making the film look and sound better than ever before. Genuine care has clearly been taken here to balance Coppola’s original intentions with high definition media, and with a solid pack of extra features to back the films up, this is an excellent box set, and set to be a very treasured one. --Jon Foster
Collection of all three movies of the award-winning trilogy 'The Godfather', directed and co-written by Francis Ford Coppola and based on the successful novel by Mario Puzo. Beginning with 'The Godfather' (1972), in late 1940s New York, Mafia 'Godfather' Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando) gathers his three sons around him for daughter Connie (Talia Shire)'s wedding; the hot-headed Sonny (James Caan), ineffectual Fredo (John Cazale) and war hero Michael (Al Pacino), who chooses to distance himself from the family 'business'. When Vito is shot and wounded for refusing to sanction a rival family's heroin sales on his territory, Sonny temporarily takes over and embarks on bloody gang warfare. This results in him being killed in an ambush, and Michael finds himself nominated to succeed the ailing Vito. The film won three Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor (Brando) and Best Adapted Screenplay. In 'The Godfather: Part II' (1974), it is 1958 and Michael has now fully embraced the trappings of a mafia boss, leading to conflict with his wife, Kay (Diane Keaton). As he attempts to expand his crime empire, he thinks of his late father Vito's rise to power in New York during the 1920s, but all of Michael's attempts to emulate Vito and do the best for his family only pulls them further apart. Robert De Niro plays the young Vito in flashbacks to his early life. Both a prequel and sequel to the first movie, the film was nominated for eleven Oscars, winning five awards including Best Picture, Best Director and Best Supporting Actor (De Niro). Finally, in 'The Godfather: Part III' (1990), it is 1979, and Michael donates $100 million to the Vatican as a signal that his family intend to go legitimate. Unfortunately, the hot-headed Vincent Mancini (Andy Garcia), illegitimate son of Michael's late brother, Sonny, has taken an interest in both business affairs and Michael's daughter, initiating a violent and bloody power struggle. The film was nominated for seven Oscars, including Best Director, Best Picture and Best Cinematography.