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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 3 February 2015
This 1985 black comedy of New York mafia goings-on was something of a 'family affair’ (in my book, always something to be slightly wary of) – it being directed by John Huston (based on co-screenwriter Richard Condon’s novel) and starring the director’s daughter Angelica and her erstwhile partner Jack Nicholson as an estranged couple. Of course, all three have done much great work in their careers, and certainly anything with Nicholson in it is always worth seeing, but I must admit (on watching the film again) I was slightly surprised to see how many Oscar nominations it garnered (a reflection of the often mediocre 1980s Hollywood output) – albeit Ms Huston, in a rather underused role here, was fully deserving of her Best Supporting Actress win.

It’s also a (relatively) long film – at over two hours’ duration – and is (for me, at least) a very slow starter, as Nicholson’s hit man, Charley Partanna, (rather unconvincingly) falls for Kathleen Turner’s 'tax consultant’, Irene Walker, and a 'whirlwind romance’ ensues. Essentially a mix of romance, comedy and 'serious’ character drama, Huston’s film does the first much less convincingly (or compellingly) than the latter two. Of course, once we realise that Irene is also a contract killer, then the laughs ratchet up a notch and, as we enter the murky 'Godfather-like’ underworld of Charley’s extended family, the film’s themes of loyalty and honour (OK, honor) begin to grip. Thereafter, Huston’s film becomes an entertaining (highly) plot-driven character drama (with an increasing number of killer lines) and a case of 'who’s double-crossing who?’. Nicholson is good in this comedic, 'dumb gangster’ role (though his persona here is a little too mannered for me) and Turner and (particularly) Huston, as the 'jilted lover’ out for revenge, both impressive, but it is the supporting cast who really deliver the acting goods. The unscrupulous, ruthless, but 'family-oriented’, criminal world is exemplified by the Oscar-nominated William Hickey, superb as the family’s Mr Big, Don Corrado Prizzi, and his right-hand men, John Randolph’s (father to Charley), Angelo, and Lee Richardson’s Dominic Prizzi.

For me, Huston’s film is certainly not a classic and has a rather underwhelming and (seemingly) rushed ending, but for its intriguing plotting and host of outstanding character acting turns is worth seeing.
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on 7 September 2015
I think I just about like it but only because it's good in parts. Not sure I quite think Jack's stuffed lip really helps though somehow I suppose it signifies 'dumb' and stops him giving that trademark devilish grin. Turner is more effective as she's got a bit of acting to do and has the winning smile. The 'challenging' part for Angelica Huston is more nuanced, or at least she gets different comic moods to evince. The story is twisty enough but the Don is a very misjudged (or poorly directed/made-up) part, annoying and unconvincing. It's pointlessly slow and uninvolving at times and then it has some decent set-pieces. It's not interesting cinematically - the 'joke' of all the air travel 'right' and 'left' across the screen is the giveaway that somehow no one was really focussed. And as someone has said, the top brass at Mafia central are about as worrying as the Louth over 60s bowls team: but maybe that was part of 'the point'. It has something to say about American capitalism etc. etc. but not so that its worked-out.
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on 7 June 2012
Director John Huston was a master of storytelling, and Prizzi's Honor was his black comedy masterpiece. It was nominated for eight Academy Awards including Best Picture, and Anjelica Huston won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her caustic performance. Charley Partanna, a do-it-yourself kind of guy, has been loyal to 'The Family' since he can remember. If you need somebody rubbed out, he's your eraser, ready to kill at the drop of a dollar. Boss Don Corrado Prizzi's daughter, Maerose, has eyes for Charley, but Charley has already fallen for a sultry hit-woman named Irene Walker. Their unlikely romance hits a snag, however, as Irene and Charley have each been hired to knock off the other.
this is unlike any other type of John Huston picture . It combines elements of The Godfather along with scenes that seem better to fit in a comedy than a Mob drama. Yet, it works brilliantly , perhaps thanks to the serious performances of Nicholson and Turner who have marvelous chemistry between them for two people that aren't very likable.The two are joined by an outstanding supporting cast including Hustons daughter Angelica who won an Oscar for her sly performance.The film is dark comedy and a very clever plot complimenting the Godfather saga. The film earned his eight Academy Award nominations. It has an all-star cast, great writing, and visually stunning scenery set in New York City. this film is Love mafia style at its best...
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 13 June 2015
John Huston's marvellous slow-paced, mature dark comedy about love, loyalty, deception, betrayal, honour and magazine articles is a delight. Its cynical deadpan humour and pedestrian storytelling may feel laboured to some, but I thoroughly enjoyed its lingering cinematography, Italian music and subtle parody of the mafia gangster genre. In Coppola's Godfather when Diane Keaton is introduced to the Corleone clan by Al Pacino's Michael, she is a non-connected innocent outsider. In this film when Jack Nicholson's trusted Sicilian mob enforcer Charley Partanna introduces Kathleen Turner's Irene to the Prizzis, although she is an outsider she is far from being innocent, she is also a contract assassin and a suspect in the theft of money from a casino run by the family. Smitten Charley is in a quandary, as he asks his long-time friend and lover Maerose Prizzi (an Oscar winning performance by Anjelica Huston) "do I ice her or do I marry her?" There is an inevitable logic to the narrative which does not disappoint and although the film's ending is certainly abrupt it does not detract from everything which precedes.
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on 19 March 2013
Not Jack's best role. Not close infact. Much better out there, best just sweep this one under the carpet, unfortunately.
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on 5 November 2013
I love jack nicholson but i feel this film is not his best or even the his co stars best but it has it moments of good, i enjoyed it as far as 3/5 but i wouldnt rush to see it again. I felt it lacked something it didnt hold my attention as much as it shouldve, i was little shocked to read it was up for so many oscars when some other films struggle to get one or two but there it goes, one to watch for lazy afternoon with nothing to do.
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on 11 April 2007
When the mafia becomes the argument of an action film and little more it is no longer funny, it is no longer strange, it is no longer fascinating. It is nothing but outlandish and terroristic. It takes all Jack Nicholson can give to make these characters in anyway palatable, and even so. In the Prizzi family all other considerations than the family is outlawed, except maybe for a couple of weeks and the woman concerned by this out-breeding passing passion has to submit and take the color of the wall on which she is being pinned. If she does not then she will be executed and cut off. There is no depth in that film, no subtleties or even subtlety. Get the message, bang it down on the table and then cram it down your brain. Business is business and in-breeding is the rule. I will always wonder why a hit-woman with a reputation of efficiency and effectiveness misses her husband when he intends to kill her though she manages to shoot one bullet first. Suspend your disbelief and incredulity. The cinema is the new church of the visual dominant animal man is. To see is to believe. But at times to believe is easier when you are blind, and probably deaf too. Apart from that it is interesting even if we do spend a little bit too much time in planes going east and planes going west, kind of an airlift between New York, or whatever may titillate you, and Los Angeles, or whatever it takes to please you.

Dr Jacques COULARDEAU, University Paris Dauphine & University Paris 1 Pantheon Sorbonne
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on 22 February 2010
Veteran Director John Huston's penultimate film is a black comedy masterpiece written by the author of the novel Richard Condon who co-wrote with Janet Roach the screenplay; Jack Nicholson heads up the cast as the dim-witted Mafia contract killer (Charley Partanna) that unknowing falls for fellow hit person Irene Walker (Kathleen Turner) in the process of having a romantic entanglement they are hired by their employers to kill each other, this was the film that the set the benchmark in satire when using "the family" as its subject matter .

In 1986 the director's daughter Anjelica won the Oscar for best supporting actress playing Maerose Prizzi the daughter of Boss Don Corrado Prizzi who has her sights on Charley, this film may seen a little old-fashioned compared to T.V. shows like "The Sopranos" or the other Oscar Mafia comedy from 1988 "Married to the Mob" with Alec Baldwin and Michelle Pffeiffer but Prizzi's Honor did the jokes first.

The DVD of this film is pretty poor quality the transfer is very grainy and the soundtrack is pretty flat this state of affairs should be fixed as John Houston is a very important American actor/director and his work deserves better.
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on 16 April 2017
Interesting story line on honour and shame culture.
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on 17 April 2016

YOU did it again.

UK company cut out 6 minutes from the original film.

Way to go!!!
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