Discussion in 'The Pub' started by Shredzilla, Dec 7, 2017.
The best part...
A bit off topic but if Michael told Roth that Frank tried to kill him when he really knew if was Roth and Michael would later tell Frank he knew Roth ordered the hit but he wanted Roth to think Michael suspected it was Frank. Who ordered the hit on Frank in the restaurant?
If I remember correctly, the brother didn't even speak English, and didn't fully understand the situation. My inference from the scene was that Frankie clearly knew his brother would be killed if he implicated Michael. Simple. It had nothing to do with honor.
This was my take on the situation.
You remember when Mike asked Roth if he had an issue with killing Frankie?
Mike- "So Pantangeli's a dead man, you don't object?"
Roth- " He's small potatoes".
Then you remember when Mike withheld the money in Cuba and he brought up Pantangeli and Roth countered with Moe Green?
It was Roth. And he had his guy say, "Michael Corleone says hello".
And then later, Tom (talking to Michael) recaps the situation with Frankie testifying, and says, "Roth played this one beautiful."
Finally home from work and instead of hitting on the wife I am sitting here getting ready to watch The Godfather.
I knew I didn't get the line right,but close.
But those guys only didn’t kill Pentangeli because they were interrupted by cops. Also never made sense to me. Unless the cops were part of the plan.
Didn't Aiello improvise the line? For some reason I thought he did, and that Coppola liked it so he left it in the film.
I use the " can't do it Sally " line alot when someone wants something from me
IMO it had everything to do with the brother being there to make it clear to Pentangeli he better not squeal. The brother knew that Pentangeli was going to testify against Michael, and that's all he needed to know. And I'm sure there were plenty of guys who could speak Italian available and any of them could have easily 'splained it (heck, Michael could have) but, really, how much 'splaining did the brother really need? The look the brother gave to Pentangeli said it all (and it wasn't a fearful look, it was a "you f'ing better not say sh!t" look), and then there's Michael's "It was between the brothers" remark too.
Except that it is sufficiently ambiguous as rendered in the film that we're left with something fairly opaque. It isn't really simple, I mean. You assume one thing, other folks make different readings. I don't think it's meant to be solved by the viewer, and that it works well regardless is a testament to the narrative.
I’ll just say in all my watching of the film it never occurred to me that they were threatening the brother. I thought it was pretty clear that the brother was shaming him. This is consistent with afterwards when Michael says (from memory) “All he had to do was show up?” And Tom says “It was between the brothers.”
Indeed. A reminder of familial ties between the old and the new country, and the carryover of the idea of omertà and all that.
I have seen assertions that the brother's presence represented a direct threat to Frank's brother but I think otherwise. Look at the expression on the brother's face. Is it one of fear or disgust? Frank's brother was there to remind him of the dishonor he was about to do. OTOH, it is obvious that if Frank had ratted, his whole family would be targeted, but that went without saying. Recall that Frank, later in the film, referenced the tradition of familial protection for those who honor the code. Al he had to do to engage or regain such respect was off himself.
ERGO: It was about honor. Frank was given one last reminder via his brother's disgust.
In '73, I was just a teenager and spent the summer training (alpine ski racing) on the glaciers of the Alps. On my way through Milan, I got a yen for pastries. I did not know that my Sicilian dialect, learned from my Grandparents, would be abhorrent to the shop owner. I complimented his pastries in the best Italian I could muster. I might as well have offered him an insultingly low sum for his daughter, for he punched me in the gut so hard I couldn't breath until after he tossed me out of his shop.
When I returned home I told my Dad and Uncles about the incident. I recall that this is what I heard...
My mother's family is from Naples and my father's was from Sicily. They were married in 1959. From what they have said, it was a real problem that they were marrying. So I'm half Sicilian and half Neapolitan. My father would say, "You can make yourself an offer you couldn't understand"
I always felt that Frankie's brother was a big deal in Sicily, maybe a "chieftan". That was why he was brought to the hearings, as a threat to Frankie.
Getting punched in the gut by a pastry-shop owner. Man, that's a new one!
To the Shredder (OP): Sorry for the short sidebar. Not a HiJacking.
That's a dangerous joke. Hilarious, but if I told it to Uncle Mario, he'd "send me fishing with Fredo."
Kidding aside, may I ask? I say that I am Italian and qualify it secondarily with my Sicilian heritage. Is that wrong? Either way, I won't promulgate ancient grudges our elders held.