Just When You Thought You Were Out: ‘The Godfather Part III’ Being Re-Released With New Ending

The Godfather Part III is not a great movie. Of course, compared to the previous two films, no movie could be called a great movie. The Godfather and The Godfather Part II are two of Hollywood’s biggest cinematic masterpieces, focusing on the rise and subsequent fall of the Corleone family. Marlon Brando gave audiences a deal they couldn’t refuse, as well as a performance that they couldn’t deny, even if they wanted to. So, too, did Al Pacino and it was Pacino that would take center stage in the third film of The Godfather trilogy, directed by Francis Ford Coppola.

Now, 30 years after its release, The Godfather Part III is being re-released with brand new, restored footage and a new, extended ending. We don’t want to give away any spoilers but, we mean, it’s kind of in the title. Mario Puzzo’s The Godfather, Coda: The Death of Michael Corleone, as Coppola originally wanted the film to be called, and which it now will be, is going to be released in select theaters this December, followed by a release on digital and DVD.

While this film earned numerous Academy Award nominations, it has always been viewed by critics as the red-headed stepchild in this Italian crime family. It featured a dynamic performance from Al Pacino, because Pacino don’t play, but it failed to live up to the standards set by the previous two films, which have been called two of the greatest films of all time. Much like Michael Corleone trying to create his own legacy, The Godfather Part III is better viewed not as a sequel, but as a standalone coda, hence the new title. Coppola and Mario Puzzo, the author of the book on which the films are based, never wanted the film to carry The Godfather title and now, that wrong will be righted faster than you can put a dead horse’s head in somebody’s bed.

“Mr. Coppola oversaw every aspect of the restoration while working on the new edit, ensuring that the film not only looks and sounds pristine, but also meets his personal standards and directorial vision,” said senior vice president of Paramount Archives Andrea Kalas, in a statement to the public.

Between this and HBO Max’s re-release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, we are truly living in an auteurs age. Ignoring the fact we swore we’d never spend another dollar on The Godfather Part III, we have to admit that our curiosity is piqued. Perhaps this film will finally offer the deserved closure audiences have been wanting for the past 30 years. If not, we may just have to grab Coppola by the face, kiss him on the lips and tell him, one more time, that he broke our hearts. We don’t think he will, though, and we are very excited to witness, one more time, the death (or is it?) of Michael Corleone.

Cover Photo: Paramount Pictures

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