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The Offer DVD Review

A fantastic ensemble makes “The Offer” a delight.

Created by Michael Tolkin, “The Offer” is a limited biodrama series/mini-series about the outrageous story behind the making of “The Godfather.” The 10 episode Paramount+ series is largely told through the perspective of Albert Ruddy. After working in an entirely different field, Ruddy finds himself working in Hollywood first as the creator of “Hogan’s Heroes” before working with Paramount and eventually producing “The Godfather.” The cinematic classic’s journey to the big screen was ripe with complications in the casting, production, post-production, and shooting location departments as well as creative and financial clashes between production head Robert Evans, studio exec Barry, director Francis Ford Coppola, and studio head Charles Bludhorn. And then there’s the novel written by Mario Puzo (which was optioned by Paramount to be made into a movie). The book caused quite a stir in the Italian-American community and mafia man Joe Colombo takes it upon himself to stop the movie from getting made…until he eventually becomes involved in its production. Other key subplots here involve Ruddy’s romance with Francoise, a mob war between Joe Gallo and Joe Colombo, Paramount’s possible sale, Bettye’s career ambitions, Robert Evans personal and career troubles, the successful release of “The Godfather.”

Some viewers and critics have dismissed “The Offer” as being too referential and Hollywoodized, but as far as stories about moviemaking go, “The Offer” as an absolute joy to watch. Not only is it a fun trip back to 60’s and 70’s Hollywood, but showrunner Nikki Toscano has created a highly entertaining “stranger than fiction” based on a true story series about art, dreams, and cinema. It’s always remarkable to see something like a beloved classic such as “The Godfather” having such a hellish production and yet turning out to be a classic. Sometimes the story behind a movie is just as rewarding as the movie itself. That’s not to say “The Offer” is on the same level as “The Godfather” (it isn’t), but it works as a companion piece to be sure.

Where “The Offer” really shines is with its brilliant ensemble cast. Seriously, this is one of the best casts you will see all year. Miles Teller (who is having a banner year) is great as the lead Albert Ruddy. Dan Fogler (who is largely known for comedy films) flexes his acting muscles as Francis Ford Coppola and fits the role surprisingly well. Juno Temple can do no wrong as is a key component of the show as Ruddy’s ultra smart, life saving assistant Bettye McCartt. The always reliable Giovanni Ribisi makes an impression as the mobster Joe Colombo. Last, but certainly not least is Matthew Goode as Robert Evans. Anyone who knows anything about the producer or has seen “The Kid Stays In The Picture” will be floored by Goode’s mesmerizing portrayal. If it were up to me, he would win an Emmy for this role.

Video/Audio:

Presentation: 16:9. Grade: B+ Note: This title is also available on Blu-ray.

Audio Track: Dolby Digital 5.1. Grade: B+Extras:

* Deleted scenes for 5 episodes
* Backstories- Behind-the-scenes featurettes for all 10 episodes
* 5 “Crafting The Offer” featurettes on wardrobe and costume design, music composition, production design, prop design and hair and makeup design.
* “No One Can Refuse: Making The Offer”- Making of featurette.
* “Meet Al Ruddy” is all about the real life producer (including interviews with the real life Ruddy).
* “Parallels: Art Imitates Art” covers the references to “The Godfather” within the show.
* “The Offer: Sending A Message” revolves around the story behind the making of the movie and the legacy of “The Godfather.”
* “Directing The Offer” is largely about Dexter Fletcher’s direction. Cast interviews also included. 

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November 25, 2022 - Posted by | DVD review | , , , , , , , , ,

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