Thursday, September 06, 2012


It has been a while since I post a movie clip here. It's simply because it is not so easy to find a new movie worth spending the time talking about. But... you can, if you try hard, find something to say about some older movies. Here is a clip from a very famous movie by a great Italian director: Sergio Leone; and the film is "Once Upon a Time in America." The movie is billed as a gangsters/mobsters/organized crime genre, but what I will show you is a love that is quite beautiful... and sad at the same time.

Here is a first of three clips: Amapola. Once Upon a Time in America is a 1984 Italian epic crime film co-written and directed by Sergio Leone and starring Robert De Niro and James Woods. The film is a story adapted from the novel "The Hoods," written by Harry Grey. The original version by the director was 269 minutes (4 hours and 29 minutes) long, but shortened to director Leone's immense grief, in the US to a mere 139 minutes (2 hours and 19 minutes.) That is the version I own, and I am still unable to find the original version that may still exist in Europe some place.

Robert De Niro played the main role of David "Noodles" Aaronson. Noodles first (and only) love was Deborah Gelly when she was a young girl, strong willed and determined to become a big star in the entertainment world. In this clip, Noodles was released after a 12 year prison term, saw a photo of Deborah and had a flash back to his unforgettable encounter with Deborah. Amapola is the main leitmotif of this movie, anchoring the doomed love of Noodles to Deborah. Amapola "(Pretty Little Poppy)" is a 1924 song by Cádiz-born composer José María Lacalle García (later Joseph LaCalle), with Spanish lyrics. After the composer died in 1937, English language lyrics were written by Albert Gamse. The music in this movie, by Ennio Morricone, is reminiscent of his work in the movie "Cinema Paradiso," another great Italian movie by director Giuseppe Tornatore.

Come back here soon to see my second (of three) clip of this movie coming up next when the leitmotif of this song returns in the only romantic but ill fated courtship of Noodles and Deborah. This Must Be The Place

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