Tagged: Michael Corleone

Michael Corleone’s Gray Striped Suit in The Godfather

Al Pacino on set as Michael Corleone in The Godfather (1972).

Al Pacino on set as Michael Corleone in The Godfather (1972).

Vitals

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone, cold and calculating New York Mafia boss

Long Island, NY, August 1955

Film: The Godfather
Release Date: March 15, 1972
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Costume Designer: Anna Hill Johnstone

Background

Last weekend, I attended a baptism. While other family members were snapping photos through tearful eyes, I kept picturing fat Clemenza blowing a guy away with a shotgun and Moe Greene getting the Bugsy Siegel treatment.

Whether or not you’re the type of person moved to sentiment by a baptism, anyone who has seen The Godfather can hardly forget the brilliance of Coppola’s juxtaposition between Michael admitting his son into the church while simultaneously sending his enemies to hell.

After returning to the United States and taking his slain brother‘s former mantle as boss of the Corleone Crime Family, Michael Corleone leaves behind the earth tones he sported earlier in the film. Gray is now his color of choice, reflected throughout his wardrobe. Continue reading

Michael Corleone’s Gray Dupioni Silk Suit

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974)

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone in The Godfather, Part II (1974)

Vitals

Al Pacino as Michael Corleone, powerful Mafia boss

Lake Tahoe, Fall 1958

Film: The Godfather Part II
Release Date: December 12, 1974
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Costume Designer: Theadora Van Runkle

Background

The Godfather is an American cultural phenomenon that needs no explanation. (For all the people secretly bummed out that I won’t give an explanation, here: It’s an epic three film journey following the rise of a Mafia family in the United States from 1901 to 1979).

There are differing opinions as to whether the first or the second part was the best. (No one ever says it’s the third one.)

In the first two films especially, costumes were a large indicator of the story. Much credit for this should be given to costume designer Theadora Van Runkle. When Michael is a proud Marine, he wears his uniform. When he is a college man looking for work, he wears a simple odd jacket, tie, and trousers. As he grows into the Don we have come to know, he wears expensive suits. Interestingly, Michael never wears a hat (aside from his USMC officer’s cap) until he becomes involved in the family.

This post will focus on the first act of The Godfather, Part II, where Michael Corleone is holding court on the day of his son’s Communion. Continue reading