Last Updated on March 6, 2021
Mario Puzo’s 1969 bestseller was made into a movie in 1972. It featured a well-received cast of Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Richard Castellano, Robert Duvall, Sterling Hayden, John Marley, Richard Conte and, Diane Keaton.
The story chronicled the Corleone crime family from 1945 to 1955. It also brought to the spotlight Michael Corleone’s journey into the underground world and his eventual transformation to ruthless Mafiosi.
The Legacy of the Godfather Movie
Paramount Pictures bought the rights to Puzo’s novel for $80,000. Finding a director turned out to be a problem at first, as the first few candidates didn’t like the job.
It was until Francis Ford Coppola signed up as director, producer, and screenwriter (along with Mario Puzo himself) that filming took place around New York and Sicily, and was completed ahead of schedule.
The Godfather premiered at the Loew’s State Theatre in New York on March 14, 1972 and was released to the rest of the United States 10 days since. Its box office earnings were between $246 and $287 million, making it the highest-grossing film of 1972 and for some time, held the record of highest-grossing film ever made.
Much praise was earned by the film, which helped step up the careers of Coppola, Pacino, and other newcomers in the cast and crew. The Godfather also helped Marlon Brando restart his career, as he moved on to star in other films.
It was selected for preservation in the US National Film registry of the Library of Congress in 1990 and was ranked the second-greatest film in American cinema by the American Film Institute.
If you’re a fan of the films, you will appreciate this collection of powerful Godfather quotes.
Unforgettable Godfather Quotes
1. “You know who I am? I’m Moe Greene! I made my bones working hard while you were going out with cheerleaders!” – Moe Greene
2 “We don’t discuss business at the table.” – Sonny Corleone
3. “I don’t like violence, Tom. I’m a businessman. Blood is a big expense.” – Sollozzo
4. “Power wears out those who do not have it.” – Calo
5. “The richest man is the one with the most powerful friends.” – Don Altobello
6. “There are things that have to be done, and you just do them.” – Tom Hagen
7. “You can do anything but never go against the family.” – Don Vito Corleone
9. “Your enemies always get strong on what you leave behind.” – Don Vito Corleone
10. “The strength of a family, like the strength of an army, lies in its loyalty to each other.” – Don Vito Corleone
11. “Time erodes gratitude more quickly than it does beauty!” – Don Vito Corleone
12. “You cannot say ‘no’ to the people you love, not often. That’s the secret. And then when you do, it has to sound like a ‘yes’. Or you have to make them say ‘no.’ You have to take time and trouble.” – Don Vito Corleone
13. “If I can die saying, “Life is so beautiful,” then nothing else is important.” – Don Vito Corleone (inner monologue)
14. “Forgive. Forget. Life is full of misfortunes.” – Don Vito Corleone
15. “I don’t trust society to protect us, I have no intention of placing my fate in the hands of men whose only qualification is that they managed to con a block of people to vote for them.” – Don Vito Corleone
16. “Many young men started down a false path to their true destiny. Time and fortune usually set them aright.” – Don Vito Corleone
17. “The lawyer with the briefcase can steal more money than the man with the gun.” – Don Vito Corleone
18. “When they come… they come at what you love.” – Don Vito Corleone
19. “If I can believe in myself that much, nothing else matters.” – Don Vito Corleone (inner monologue)
20. “I’m not interested in things that don’t concern me.” – Don Vito Corleone
21. “And as I am a reasonable man, I’m willing to do whatever is necessary to find a peaceful solution to these problems.” – Don Vito Corleone
22. “I want reliable people, people who aren’t going to be carried away.” – Don Vito Corleone
23. “You have to take time and trouble.” – Don Vito Corleone
24. “I want you to use all your powers and all your skills.” – Don Vito Corleone
25. “There are many things my father taught me here in this room. He taught me: Keep your friends close but your enemies closer.” – Michael Corleone
26. “Never let anyone know what you’re thinking.” – Michael Corleone
27. “Don’t ever take sides with anyone against the family again. Ever.” – Michael Corleone
28. “Accidents don’t happen to people who take accidents as a personal insult.” – Michael Corleone
29. “It’s all personal, every bit of business. Every piece of shit every man has to eat every day of his life is personal. They call it business. OK. But it’s personal as hell.” – Michael Corleone
30. “Never hate your enemies. It clouds your judgement.” – Michael Corleone
31. “Soldiers are paid to fight; The rebels aren’t.” – Michael Corleone
32. “I respect those who tell me the truth no matter how hard it is.” – Michael Corleone
33. “He’s been dying from the same heart attack for the last twenty years.” – Michael Corleone
34. “Friendship and money. Oil and water.” – Michael Corleone
35. “Good health is the most important thing. More than success, more than money, more than power.” – Hyman Roth
36. “Finance is a gun. Politics is knowing when to pull the trigger.” – Don Lucchesi
37. “In Sicily, women are more dangerous than shotguns.” – Calo
38. “Great men are not born great, they grow great.”
39. “Italians have a little joke, that the world is so hard a man must have two fathers to look after him, and that’s why they have godfathers.” – Tom Hagen
40. “I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse.” – Don Vito Corleone
41. “A man who doesn’t spend time with his family can never be a real man.” – Don Vito Corleone
42. “Revenge is a dish that tastes best when it is cold.” – Don Vito Corleone
43. “A friend should always underestimate your virtues and an enemy overestimate your faults.” – Don Vito Corleone
44. “I have learned more from the streets than in any classroom.” – Don Vito Corleone
45. “Women and children can afford to be careless, but not men.” – Don Vito Corleone