The Godfather

The Godfather quotes

88 total quotes (ID: 241)

Clemenza
Don Vito Corleone
Michael Corleone
Multiple Characters
Santino "Sonny" Corleone
Tom Hagen


Each man has his own destiny.


Kay: Michael, you never told me your family knew Johnny Fontane!
Michael: Oh sure, you want to meet him?
Kay: Yeah!
Michael: You know, my father helped Johnny in his career.
Kay: Really? How?
Michael: ...Let's listen to this song.
Kay: [after listening to Johnny for a while] Please, Michael. Tell me.
Michael: Well when Johnny was first starting out, he was signed to this contract with a big-band leader. And as his career got better and better he wanted to get out of it. Now, Johnny is my father's godson. My father went to see the bandleader, and offered him $10,000 to let Johnny go, but the bandleader said no. So the next day, my father went to see the bandleader again, only this time with Luca Brasi. Within an hour, the bandleader signed the release, with a certified check of $1,000.
Kay: How did he do that?
Michael: My father made him an offer he couldn't refuse.
Kay: What was that?
Michael: Luca Brasi held a gun to his head, and my father assured him that either his brains or his signature would be on the contract.
[Kay stares at Michael in disbelief]
Michael: That's a true story. ...That's my family Kay, it's not me.

[to Michael Corleone] Revenge is a dish that tastes best when it is cold.

Virgil "the Turk" Solozzo: Sonny was hot for my deal, wasn't he? And you knew it was the right thing to do...you gotta talk some sense into him. The Tattaglia family is behind me with all their people. The other New York families will go along with anything that will prevent a full-scale war. Let's face it, Tom, and all due respect. The Don, rest in peace, was slippin'. Ten years ago could I have gotten to him? Well, now he's dead. He's dead, Tom, and nothing can bring him back. So you gotta talk to Sonny and the other two kids; you gotta talk to the 'capo' regimes, that Tessio and Fat Clemenza. It's good business, Tom... let me worry about Luca. I don't like violence, Tom. I'm a business man. Blood is a big expense.

Capt. McCluskey: I thought I got all you Guinea hoods locked up, what the hell are you doing here?
Michael: What happened to the men who were guarding my father?
Capt. McCluskey: Why you little punk! What the hell are you doing telling me my business? I pulled them guys off of here, eh! -- now you get outta here -- and stay away from this hospital!
Michael: I'm not moving until you put some guards around my father's room.
Capt. McCluskey: Phil, take him in!
Cop: The kid's clean Captain, he's a war hero! He's never been busted for the rackets...
Capt. McCluskey: God Damn it, I said take him in!
Michael: What's the Turk paying you to set up my father, Captain?
Capt. McCluskey: [to Cop] Take a hold of him, stand him up, stand him up straight.
[McCluskey punches Michael and breaks his jaw]

Michael: You have to answer for Santino, Carlo...You fingered Sonny for the Barzini people. Ahh, that little farce you played with my sister. You think that could fool a Corleone? Come on. Don't be afraid, Carlo. Come on, you think I'd make my sister a widow? I'm Godfather to your son, Carlo...You're out of the Family business, that's your punishment. You're finished. I'm putting you on a plane to Vegas...I want you to stay there, understand? Only don't tell me you're innocent. Because it insults my intelligence and makes me very angry. Now, who approached you? Tattaglia or Barzini?
Carlo: It was Barzini.
Michael: Good.

Bonasera: I believe in America. America has made my fortune. And I raised my daughter in the American fashion. I gave her freedom, but I taught her never to dishonor her family. She found a boyfriend; not an Italian. She went to the movies with him; she stayed out late. I didn't protest. Two months ago, he took her for a drive, with another boyfriend. They made her drink whiskey. And then they tried to take advantage of her. She resisted. She kept her honor. So they beat her, like an animal. When I went to the hospital, her nose was a'broken. Her jaw was a'shattered, held together by wire. She couldn't even weep because of the pain. But I wept. Why did I weep? She was the light of my life, a beautiful girl. Now she will never be beautiful again. I went to the police, like a good American. These two boys were brought to trial. The judge sentenced them to three years in prison - suspended sentence. Suspended sentence! They went free that very day! I stood in the courtroom like a fool. And those two bastards, they smiled at me. Then I said to my wife, for justice, we must go to Don Corleone.

[to Santino Corleone] Never let people out of the family know what you are thinking again.

Tom Hagen: [to Don Corleone, about Virgil Sollozzo] He's known as 'The Turk.' He's supposed to be very good with a knife, but only in matters of business or some sort of reasonable complaint. His business is narcotics. He has fields in Turkey where they grow the poppies. And in Sicily, he has the plants to process them into heroin. Now, he needs cash and he needs protection from the police, for which he gives a piece of the action. I couldn't find out how much. The Tattaglia family is behind him here in New York.
Sonny: There's a lot of money in that white powder.
Tom Hagen: Well, I say yes. There's more money potential in narcotics than anything else we're looking at. Now if we don't get into it, somebody else will. Maybe one of the Five Families, maybe all of them. Now, with the money they earn, they can buy more police and political power - then they come after us. Now we have the unions, we have the gambling, and they're the best things to have. But narcotics is a thing of the future. And if we don't get a piece of that action, we risk everything we have - I mean not now, but ten years from now.

[to Vitelli, about Apollonia] I apologize if I offended you. I am a stranger in this country. And I meant no disrespect to you, or your daughter. I am an American, hiding in Sicily. My name is Michael Corleone. There are people who'd pay a lot of money for that information. But then your daughter would lose a father instead of gaining a husband. I want to meet your daughter with your permission and under the supervision of your family with all respect.

Some day, and that day may never come, I will call upon you to do a service for me. Until that day accept this justice as a gift on my daughter's wedding day.

Johnny Fontane: A month ago, he bought the movie rights to this book. A best seller - and the main character, it's a guy just like me, I, uh, I wouldn't even have to act, just be myself. [tearing up] Oh, Godfather, I don't know what to do. I don't know what to do.
Don Corleone: [shouts] You can act like a man!
[Don Corleone slaps Johnny]
Don Corleone: What's the matter with you? Is this how you turned out? A Hollywood finocchio that cries like a woman.
[Don Corleone imitates him sobbing]
Don Corleone: What can I do? What can I do? What is that nonsense. Ridiculous. You spend time with your family?
Johnny Fontane: Sure I do.
Don Corleone: Good. 'Cause a man who doesn't spend time with his family can never be a real man. Come here...You look terrible. I want you to eat. I want you to rest a while. And in a month from now, this Hollywood bigshot's gonna give you what you want.
Johnny Fontane: It's too late, they start shooting in a week.
Don Corleone: I'm going to make him an offer he can't refuse. Now, you just go outside and enjoy yourself, and uh, forget about all this nonsense. I want you, I want you to leave it all to me.

Michael: [while eating dinner with Sollozzo and McCluskey] What I want - what's most important to me - is that I have a guarantee: No more attempts on my father's life.
Sollozzo: What guarantees could I give you, Mike? I am the hunted one! I missed my chance. You think too much of me, kid - I'm not that clever. All I want is a truce.

[While talking to Tom Hagen about his career] A lawyer with his briefcase can steal more than a hundred men with guns.

Never hate your enemies. It clouds your judgement.