To me this is one of the greatest movies of all time on many levels. Primarilly, the character development is extremely deep. Anyone watching this movie can understand the strengths and fears of Lorenzo, Sonny, Colegelo, as well as some of the more supporting players. Secondly, the story depicts race relations at a changing time in this country. It describes it without taking sides and showing lots of grey areas. Not just black and white. Thirdly, it shows the innerworkings of organized crime and how people in today's society are influenced by it. Finally, the conflict Cologelo experiences by being torn between two role models, his father and the neighborhood good fellow crime boss who acts like a fatherly figure, is the central theme and explored very well through each charactes eyes. Overall, this movie has nos wasted moments and will keep you hooked from start to finish.
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About the reviewer
Glenn Wiener (Glennster2008)
I'm a muti faceted person who appreiates a wide array of creative activities.
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Chazz Palminteri wrote the script for this excellent story of an Italian American boy (Lillo Brancato) who grows up in the 1960s caught between the strong influences of his blue-collar, straight- arrow father (Robert De Niro) and a Mafia chieftain (Palminteri) who is his all-purpose mentor. De Niro makes his directorial debut with this production and, except for a little stiffness, does very well by the characters and their world. The story does not go precisely where one might expect it to go: Palminteri knows better than to force the central figure to choose between the two most important men in his life, and he doesn't fill time with stock drama about crime or family conflict. Joe Pesci makes an extremely effective and uncredited appearance at the end as a man who doesn't have to do more than speak softly to communicate how dangerous he is.--Tom Keogh