The 20 Best Scenes in The Godfather Trilogy

14. Helicopter murder scene from The Godfather Part III

Helicopter murder scene from The Godfather Part III

Michael striking a tentative deal to purchase shares of the Immobiliare real estate enterprise, Michael assembles his former mob business partners together in one room. He lets them know they will not be allowed to participate in this deal as Michael wants it to be completely legit.

Everyone gets paid off except Joey Zasa who storms out in disgust.

Immediately following, loud noises are heard from outside and Vincent realizes this is a planned execution by helicopter assassins. Machine gun fire riddles the room and a major death toll is achieved by Zasa and his boss, Don Altobello.

Obviously, this extreme action causes intense emotion from Vincent who had already hated Zasa and his intent for revenge grows even stronger.

During the meeting, you were definitely given the impression something major was going to happen; however, the helicopter still takes you by surprise.


13. “You won’t take my children!”/abortion reveal scene from The Godfather Part II

“You won't take my children!”abortion reveal scene from The Godfather Part II

The most intense scene between Michael and Kay within the trilogy has Kay revealing to Michael she plans on leaving him and not bringing their children back to Nevada after the hearings in Washington were concluded.

Michael tries to get her to change her mind, but her mind is made up. She congratulates him for besting his adversaries and is not surprised with the results.

Obviously, Michael disagrees and starts to mount slow anger toward Kay’s words as she states them. He tells her she is overreacting and they can try to have another child again since she had previously suffered a “miscarriage”.

Kay then reveals her decision to have an abortion as she was convinced she did not want another “Corleone” to enter this world. She also compared their marriage to an abortion.

Michael screams and strikes Kay.

Some of the most amazing acting of their entire film. Emotions understandably run high and both Al Pacino and Diane Keaton are up to the challenge. A pivotal moment which has repercussions throughout the rest of the trilogy.


12. Car bomb in Sicily from The Godfather

Car bomb in Sicily from The Godfather

After Michael murders Sollozzo and McCluskey, he flees America for Sicily.

While he is there, he meets and becomes infatuated with Apollonia Vitelli, the daughter of his host. He later proclaims his love and the two are married a short time later.

Michael also is informed it is not safe for him to remain at his current location and about the death of his brother, Sonny.

Unfortunately, Michael’s bodyguard has his way with Michael’s car after he is told to get it ready. Michael realizes what it about to happen and tries to stop his wife.

Apollonia starts the car and it explodes.

Another case of someone who Michael loves being taken from him.

This motivates him to return to the United States and take control of the family since his father is still too weak in his recovery.


11. The death of Sonny Corleone from The Godfather

THE GODFATHER 1972 JAMES CAAN GODF 002CP, Photo by: Everett Collection (3738)

Tensions between the crime families begin to escalate after the murders of Sollozzo and McCluskey. Michael flees to Italy, Fredo moves to Las Vegas and Sonny has a public disagreement with his brother-in-law Carlo after discovering the repeated physical abuse he has given to Sonny’s sister, Connie. Sonny threatens Carlo’s life if it happens again.

After another incident, Sonny rushes to his sister’s aide; however, he never makes it there alive. His car is stopped and blocked at a toll booth. Anonymous mob assassins appear from the car ahead and the booth next door and riddle Sonny with bullets even as he exits his vehicle for escape.

This event is important to set up the eventual taking over of the family’s business by Michael and his return from Italy as well as Vito’s subsequent reaction to Sonny’s death.


10. The door closes on Kate from The Godfather

The door closes on Kate from The Godfather

Connie returns back to the Corleone home to berate Michael for carrying out the execution of her husband, Carlo. Michael denies involvement and Kate inquiries as to the truth.

Michael gives Kate one chance to ask him about his family’s business affairs, so Kate asks if he had Carlo killed. Michael says “no”.

Kate assumes all is well until she moves into the next room and hear others enter and greet Michael for the first time as “Don Corleone”.

She may have begun to question Michael’s honesty and sincerity as she is closed off from the business conversation to end the film.

You are left to speculate what happens to the Corleone family as the first film ends as there was no planned sequel at the time and Paramount was unsure if the film would be a success.

Coppola ended up getting a Mercedes limousine as only one of his conditions to come back and direct “Part II” after the first film’s great box office and critical success.


9. Vito’s reaction to Sonny’s death from The Godfather

Vito’s reaction to Sonny’s death from The Godfather

Still recovering from his assassination attempt, Vito comes downstairs in his home to talk with Tom about why he hears his wife crying and people coming and going in his home.

Tom tells Vito Sonny has been killed.

If you haven’t seen the original “Godfather” in a while, you need to go back and watch just this one scene just for Brando’s reaction.

As much as he became an eccentric person later in his life, Brando remained one of the greatest actors of all time just due to moments like this.

Through his grief he is able to muster the strength to say he does not want any retribution for this killing as he still wants the violence to end.

What a moment!


8. The Baptism Murders from The Godfather

The Baptism Murders from The Godfather

The final acts of the three “Godfather” films are similar in design as events put in motion earlier in the films all seem to come to a head at the same time.

The montage in the first film is the best of the three.

Michael and family are attending the baptism of Connie’s baby. During this same time, the executions of the other New York crime family magistrates are being carried out. Also during this time, Vegas crony Moe Greene, and mob villain Tessio are also murdered.

It is right after these events Michael also has Connie’s husband Carlo, killed.

The timeline is setting up Michael’s ultimate “Don” coronation during the last scene.

Since this is the first film, you are not expecting multiple heinous acts of brutal murder to appear simultaneously in this way, so you are surprised when they do.