After the death of his son, Sunny (Bob Hoge), the Oddfather (Dom DeLuise), has to make a very important decision about the future of his organised crime family. No - don't worry - it's has nothing to do with his duck. Instead, he has decided to appoint his silly son, Guppy Calzone (Kevin McDonald), as the new head of his mafia-like empire.
Well, Guppy isn't not what you would call a sinister gangster type all in all. So the Oddfather and his top-henchman, Bugsy (Lou Ferrigno), try their best to make him into one. For example; they kit him out in more Mafia-like clothing. They send him off to crime-college to learn more about their underhand profession. And then, they introduce Guppy to all the heads of the crime families, and present him as their 'Big Boss'.
My, what a great thing for Guppy, right? No - not by a long shot.
For a start, the head of an opposing family, the Rodfather (Rodney Dangerfield), takes an instant disliking to Guppy, because he refuses to aide him in a heist. Next, FBI Agent Hoover (Eleen Kenney) hounds him at his every move he makes. After that, his wayward brother, Frito (Paul Greenberg), is envious of his position of power, and tries to scare him to death. And finally, whatever Guppy tries to do to further his own reputation, whilst giving his family some extra credence, ends up falling flat on its ass.
Moreover, when Guppy attempts to cement a romantic relationship with the Rodfather's daughter, Don Na (Fabiana Udenio), this results in him getting beat up, and Don Na getting chained to a wall!
So what can he do to turn his luck around, huh? Throw a party for all of the heads of crime, and have a
Hmmm. Why not?
Well, I suppose that is why what next transpires is a right spoof of an ending overall. As shots are fired - gangs are hired - reunions are made - and families are played.
You know what? I had really high hopes for 'The Godson' you know. It had a great cast. Its jovial pretext was right up my alley. And by in large it was something that I really wished I could enjoy once I sat down and watched it.
I was wrong - partly.
Well, I am afraid to say that this is the type of movie which just tries to hard to be funny. Granted, sometimes, when Rodney Dangerfield and Dom DeLuise are on the screen, it's the type of flick that I really love. For example, the quick-one liner, the satirized performances, and the sketch like nature and structure of certain scenes. However, at other times, I found that the main star of his film, Kevin McDonald, was just too one note as a performer, and I could almost second guess whatever he was going to do or say next.
Damn. I hate to say this. Especially when you take into consideration the facts: (1) Rodney Dangerfield was the first entertainer to own his own website (www.rodney.com). (2) Lou Ferrigno beat out Arnold Schwarzenegger for the role of the Hulk on the TV series of the same name. (3) Kevin McDonald's father wanted him to become a lawyer. Plus his comedic influences where people such as Gene Wilder, Andy Kaufman, Peter Sellers, and Phil Silvers. (4) Rodney made seventy appearances on the Johnny Carson show. (5) Dom DeLuise spoofed The Godfather in three movies. This one, 'Cannonball Run 2', and 'Robin Hood: Men in Tights'. (6) Fabiana Udenio was born in
which is where Marlon Brando was given the nick-name 'Grondona' [meaning 'Grondona']. (7) Rodney
based his line in this film "I get no respect" on an experience he
had at a nightclub once. One night, he saw a low level gangster complaining about
how young people gave him "no respect, no respect at all" and
Dangerfield never forgot it. He even turned it into the title of his own
autobiography. And (8) Dom Was named as the "King of Brooklyn" in
See what I mean? This cast could really have done something special with 'The Godson', something more than just make it into a silly 'throw away comedy' - which it is. Maybe this had something to do with the inexperience of the then fledgling writer / director, Bob Hoge, because he has not really done anything like this before or since. Or else, maybe this is because I really wanted something that sparkled out of the screen, rather than fizzled in the breeze.
It's a shame really, as there were some quite memorable set pieces in this film overall. It's just that as a whole, this crime-spoof concentrated more on the spoof than it did on the story-line. Also, I would have liked to have seen more out of Lou, Rodney, Don, Eleen, and Fabians characters - because there were times that they really did stake their claim in this flick, without even seeming to try.
Please note, I am not trying to imply that Kevin is a fault here in any way shape or form. But within the confines of this movie, he was like sugar to tea - if you have too much of it, it can give you a toothache.
All in all, 'The Godson' is a film for those people who would like a dose of Dom or Rodney, whilst at the same time not minding a spattering of mindless escapism of the criminal kind.
Not a bad film - just not a good one.
THE RATING: C+