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THE OFFER (2022, USA) – 7.5/10

Exactly half a century has passed since the release of the film that many consider the best and greatest of all time. Of course, we are talking about the masterpiece “The Godfather” by one of the greatest visionaries of American cinema, Francis Ford Coppola. When one thinks of “The Godfather”, the first associations are probably Coppola, maybe Marlon Brando or Al Pacino, but the series, which consists of ten episodes, in which we follow how the legendary film was made in the first place, is followed from the perspective of a man called Albert S. Ruddy. Honestly, until watching “The Offer” I had no idea who Al Ruddy was, or even who the producer of the film that changed cinema was. However, all those who will watch this series will probably remember well who Ruddy is, since “The Offer” is based on his memoirs and we follow the whole story from his perspective.

Unfortunately, today it is illusory to expect a film like “The Godfather” to appear, and we are obviously doomed to content like this, in which we can watch with nostalgia and longing what the era looked like when Hollywood was a significantly different place. A place where directors with a vision got a chance and where producers who believed in their vision stood behind them, and the success of “The Godfather” certainly contributed significantly to the golden seventies of the American dream factory. Playing on nostalgia is actually the strongest asset of the series, which annoyed me at times because it all looks like a screen adaptation of a Wikipedia article. There we learn numerous anecdotes that, as Ruddy, who is also one of the producers of the series claims, even though he was well into the nineties at the time of filming, really happened, although some of them are really hard to believe.

We also get an interesting insight into the functioning of the film studios of that time, what kind of business it was then and who were the owners of those corporations in which the film studios were only a part of the portfolio. If everything we see in this series is true, then the story of filming “The Godfather” is almost as interesting and exciting as the movie itself, but I was a bit disappointed not only by the performance of the main characters, but also by their interpretation. I found it quite flat, at times crowded as if the main guiding thought was to insert all possible trivia for the fans, and perhaps the biggest disappointment for me is the boy who once promised a lot, Miles Teller.

The not-so-young actor who perfectly matched JK Simmons in “Whiplash” did not sit well with me here and is not convincing. Not to mention Juno Temple as his assistant Bettye, who is standard nonsense, and almost all the other characters are made quite one-dimensional, almost like caricatures of themselves. Of course, it’s thankless to play greats like Marlon Brando or Al Pacino, but in that regard, this was really below the level of expectations and quality that we usually have in such expensive serial productions. This series annoyed me at times because of the trivialization of many situations, mostly because “The Godfather” is just something trivial and “The Offer” does not capture the depth, completeness and importance of that unsurpassed masterpiece.

This series seems to show what “The Godfather” would look like if by any chance it was filmed today and it would probably be a film whose only ambition is to fill the box office and offer the audience a short-term entertainment that they will forget as soon as it leaves the cinema. Coppola’s “The Godfather” is actually the exact opposite of that, a film that can be watched dozens of times and equally enjoyed even though one almost knows every dialogue by heart and what will happen when. Although it disappointed me in many ways, the series “The Offer” still has its qualities, and it was really fun the last few weeks to immerse myself in that somewhat fairy-tale world that evokes nostalgia and follow the story of the creation of a film that I simply adore.