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The Valachi Papers (1972)

R  |   |  Crime, Drama  |  6 January 1972 (France)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 1,825 users  
Reviews: 24 user | 11 critic

When Joe Valachi (Charles Bronson) has a price put on his head by Don Vito Genovese (Lino Ventura), he must take desperate steps to protect himself while in prison. An unsuccessful attempt ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (novel), 2 more credits »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
Maria Reina Valachi
Walter Chiari ...
Gap
...
Gerald S. O'Loughlin ...
Ryan (as Gerald O'Loughlin)
Amedeo Nazzari ...
Gaetano Reina
Fausto Tozzi ...
Pupella Maggio ...
Letizia Reina
Angelo Infanti ...
Guido Leontini ...
Tony Bender
María Baxa ...
Donna
Mario Pilar ...
Salierno
Franco Borelli ...
Buster
Alessandro Sperli ...
Giuseppe 'Joe the Boss' Masseria (as Alessandro Sperlì)
Edit

Storyline

When Joe Valachi (Charles Bronson) has a price put on his head by Don Vito Genovese (Lino Ventura), he must take desperate steps to protect himself while in prison. An unsuccessful attempt to slit his throat puts him over the edge to break the sacred code of silence. Written by Richard Jones <rjo339@swbell.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The syndicate. Genovese. Anastasia. Luciano. Masseria. Lucchese. Maranzano. The way they lived - The way they died. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

|

Release Date:

6 January 1972 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Cosa Nostra  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's director Terence Young once said of this movie: "In The Valachi Papers (1972) we show all the real characters - such as Lucky Luciano, Murder Inc. head Albert Anastasia - and the eliminations which were almost a ritual". See more »

Goofs

During a car chase scene, the cameras back out too far from the antique cars, and you can see modern (circa late 60's - early 70's)cars in the street with them. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Munich (2005) See more »

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User Reviews

 
The Singing Gangster
14 December 2006 | by (Buffalo, New York) – See all my reviews

Charles Bronson starts to break out of spaghetti westerns and good character roles and becomes a leading man around the time The Valachi Papers came out. It was a big milestone in his career, playing the most famous gangster stoolie of all.

It's not quite true that all Valachi's testimony managed to do was get a lot of high television ratings for some re-election hungry Senators. Not that they didn't get it and didn't appreciate the side benefits of those famous televised hearings, but eventually what came out of the Valachi hearings was the RICO law which has in fact put quite a dent into organized crime.

The Valachi Papers has Charles Bronson telling FBI man Gerald S. O'Loughlin about his life and times in organized crime with La Cosa Nostra from the days of the Marranzano-Masseria wars until the present which would have been 1962. He doesn't really tell anything new to them, basically he confirms what had been gangster legend about the circumstances of many a demise. But with some hard documentation now, new laws are created to meet the problem.

Bronson does his best with Valachi, but the story has him pretty one dimensional. It's far from The Godfather where you really get inside the characters of the fictional Corleone family. Bronson sure has no conscience about what he did and I'm sure the real Valachi didn't either. In fact the only reason he turns informer is that Vito Genovese already mistakenly has him down as one.

Fans of the gangster genre and Charles Bronson should give this one a look. Others should see The Godfather all three parts.


4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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