I’ll start out by saying that the movie, The Godfather is one of President Obama’s favorite movies.
In the movie You’ve Got Mail Tom Hanks’ character Joe, types to Kathleen, Meg Ryan’s character:
JOE: The Godfather is the I Ching. The Godfather is the sum of all wisdom. The Godfather is the answer to any question. What should I pack for my summer vacation? “Leave the gun, take the cannoli.” What day of the week is it? “Maunday, Tuesday, Thursday, Wednesday.” And the answer to your question is “Go to the mattresses.”
You’re at war. “It’s not personal, it’s business. It’s not personal it’s business.” Recite that to yourself every time you feel you’re losing your nerve. I know you worry about being brave, this is your chance. Fight. Fight to the death.
I’ve always remembered those lines and quite frankly, I agree with Joe!
The other day CNN’s Jack Cafferty asked the question:
Here’s my question to you: Historically, what does the killing of Osama bin Laden compare to?
The following answer stood out because I had been noticing some Godfather parallels as well.
It’s the Godfather, Jack. First Saif Gaddaffiand some of his sons in a bomb blast in an upscale suburb, then Bin Ladenin a massive hit at a fortified mansion.. Moammar Gaddaffi is sure to follow, Mubarak may go away for a long time, and in this administration’s cinematic way, Ahmadinejad will probably get it in the bathtub.
I didn’t have that particular scene in mind but one can make the analogy between President Obama’s attendance at the White House Correspondents Dinner and Michael Corleone’s presence at the baptismal ceremony, after Obama gave order to take bin Laden out.
I heard MSNBC’s Chris Matthews compare the shots to bin Laden’s eye reminiscent of the “Moe Greene” execution in The Godfather II. That was pretty far fetched, but so is this entire exercise. But let’s continue…
Maureen Dowd saw what I saw as well:
No wonder the president’s top generals call him “a Cool Hand Luke.”
After giving the order for members of a Navy Seals team to execute a fantastically daring plan to, let’s be honest, execute Osama bin Laden, Barack Obama put on a tuxedo and gave a comedy speech Saturday night in a Washington ballroom of tippling journalists and Hollywood stars.
If we could have seen everything unfolding in real time, it would have had the same dramatic effect as the intercutting in the president’s favorite movie, “The Godfather,” when Michael Corleone calmly acts as godfather at his nephew’s baptism at church, even as his lieutenants carry out the gory hits he has ordered on rival mobsters.
So, what say you, readers? Are there any parallels between The President’s actions this past week or so and any part of The Godfather Trilogy?