Monday, July 26, 2004

Eh-hum # 9

Are you talking to me?  Are you talking to me?

Though I haven't seen the Taxi Driver, as far as I heard it is one of Robert De Niro's best performances.  But I think he's at his best when he portrays a Mafia Don (Vito Corleone)/Mob Boss (Al Capone).
Why talk about Mr De Niro all of the sudden?  Friday night I was able to watch "Analyze That" which De Niro's stars with Billy Crystal.  If you haven't seen the this one or the first installment, its about a shrink and a mafia boss, their "working relationship" and the complications that goes with it.
De Niro doing a comedy has a same effect on me as Robin Williams in a thriller (in short....ashteeg).  I can't really explain it but when I find the right words, I'll share it.
Let's hit the mattresses....
I have been always intigued by the Mafia, since I first saw the Godfather (with a handsome Al Pacino and superb Marlon Brando).  I find it ironic that an organized crime group would consider itself as a family (the Boss/Don being the father-figure and leader of the group).  With secret ceremonies and being highly protective of their kins and those loyal to them, a family can be ruthless and unmerciful towards rival families (that's when they hit the mattresses) and yes, the authorities.  I guess this what makes it fascinating, the complex culture behind a Mafia.
Originally, a Mafia refers to a loose group of people who joined together  for purposes of vigilante law enforcement and protection among its members.  The concept was born in Sicily centuries ago and during the mid-20th Century, spread to the United States by way of immigration.  It was in this time (I think) that the organization became engaged in criminal activities.
Due to the efforts of the FBI, they have managed to control (if not totally eradicate) this type of system during the 1980's.  But the Mafia lives on, thanks to the movies (Godfather trilogy, Gotti), tv shows (the Sopranos) and documentaries, people are still very much aware of the Italian Mafia and the larger than life characters that make it all the more interesting.

No comments: