Godfather III begins in 1979, where Don Michael Corleone (Al Pacino) has just donated one hundred million dollars to the Catholic church in his never-ending quest to legitimize the family business. The years have been financially good to the Corleones, but even his large donation turns sour as Vatican politics and greed take over and ruin his chances for respectability. Meanwhile, Michael's hotheaded nephew Vincent (Sonny's illegitimate son, played smoothly by Andy Garcia) joins the Corleone family, but longs for the violent past that Michael has left behind Vincent calls for revenge when the power struggle between the old dons and the young leads to a violent massacre in Atlantic City, and again Michael is drawn into conflict.
Michael's ex-wife, Kay (Diane Keaton) has remarried and his son leaves to pursue an operatic career. His daughter Mary (Coppola's daughter Sofia, a last minute replacement for Winona Ryder) and his sister Connie (Talia Shire) remain at home with him.
The Corleone family congregate in Sicily for the end of the movie, where son Anthony is singing in the opera Cavalleria Rusticana. The final violent show-downplays itself out against the drama of the opera.
Pacino is great as the aged and ailing Corleone, who is trying to be an honorable man, but realizes that "every time I try to get out, they pull me back in".
It's been sixteen years since Godfather II and all the richness and grandeur remain. It's a beautiful film to watch. It is well acted and a fitting end to a saga. Only one question remains for Francis Ford Coppola - what took you so long?
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