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The Valachi Papers (1972)

 -  Crime | Drama  -  6 January 1972 (France)
6.6
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 1,749 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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Writers:

(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

Real life husband-and-wife actors Charles Bronson and Jill Ireland played husband-and-wife characters Joseph and Maria Reina Valachi. 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 The Bob Newhart Show: Old Man Rivers (1973) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Best Polish mafia film I've seen
13 October 2007 | by (Philly) – See all my reviews

I give this a 7 stars because it was made the same year as Godfather I, so it didn't benefit from all the film-industry wisdom that followed that production. Rather, this is a character study of one mafioso, which is a separate issue from the operatic, all-systems-GO no-holds-barred approach Coppola was able to employ in The Godfather. it's a smaller film, and should be compared to, say, Mobsters (1991), which deals with the same period and some of the same characters as V.P. Charles Bronson's Valachi is adequate. He's a workaday, uneducated, down- home mob guy, and Bronson plays him as if he were Polish, with a job that he goes to every day, where everyone talks Italian. Because it is through his eyes that we see his world, some of the other characters become more vivid, e.g., Joseph Wiseman as Salvatore Maranzano. When I compare the casting of the incomparable Joseph Wiseman in this role as opposed to, say, Michael Gambon in the same role in Mobsters, or Anthony Quinn as an equally old-school rival in the same film, I wonder: None of these actors are Italian -American or even simply Italian; why do some of them work, and the others don't? Granted that Wiseman, Quinn and Gambon are all consummate professionals and true craftsmen as actors, if anyone mentions Salvatore Maranzano and the Castellammarese gang war of 1929, the face that will come to my mind is that of Joseph Wiseman. He and Charles Bronson make this film worth seeing.


2 of 2 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Is it just me or is this an awful lot like Goodfellas? mglasson
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