If you need a little break from the Christmas shopping, music, and the crowds, how about watching The Godfather? This free golden anniversary screening comes with a special introduction and discussion by a Film Studies professor.

Photo Courtesy of Cinema St. Louis

I’m ready for a Christmas break!

Can you believe it’s been 50 years since Francis Ford Copploa, who co-wrote the screenplay with Mario Puzo, made The Godfather? Watch this special Golden Anniversaries screening of the winner of the Oscar for Best Picture—and also widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time—at 12:30 pm Saturday, December 10 for free at the St. Louis Public Library. Golden Anniversaries is presented by Cinema St. Louis and features classic films celebrating their 50th anniversary.

An introduction and discussion of the film will be led by Vincent Casaregola, professor of English and director of the Film Studies Program at Saint Louis University.

The movie was based on a novel of the same name by Mario Puzo, and it focuses on the powerful Italian–American crime family of Don Vito Corleone, played by Marlon Brando. Don’s youngest son, played by Al Pacino, reluctantly joins the Mafia and gets sucked into the cycle of violence and betrayal. Diane Keaton plays his wife.

Brando won the Best Actor Academy Award, which was rejected on his behalf by Sacheen Littlefeather because he was protesting Hollywood’s portrayal of Native Americans in film. The film scored Best Supporting Actor nominations for Al Pacino, James Caan, and Robert Duvall. Coppol shared the Best Adapted Screenplay with Puzo but didn’t win Best Director until The Godfather Part II was made. (It was won by Cabaret in 1973, the year these awards were given.)

The US Library of Congress in 1990 selected the film for preservation in the National Film Registry for being deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant,” the American Film Institute ranked it the second greatest film in American cinema, behind Citizen Kane.