Paulie’s the name. I’m an old hippie. Always have been, I suppose. Despite the fabricated reputation that hippies are all about a lack of hygiene, a deficiency in intelligence & fear of education, we’re clean, bright & erudite. We adore art & music, and love to travel. Especially, back in the day, to see Jerry play. “Those were the great old days, you know. And we were everywhere, like the Roman Empire. The Grateful Dead family was like the Roman Empire.” Now you’ll find us at the beach, especially on the East Coast of FL. “I’m a retired business analyst living on a pension. That was the business I chose because I like to vacation in New Smyrna Beach FL, and I wish to live there as a hippie in the twilight of my life.” We’ve been going there for 15 years; thrice a year, every year, for the last 10. I once promised my wife, Cindy, we’d move there when I retired. “Let me think of what I once told her: ‘In five years the Marino family will be completely, legitimately debt free, and we’ll be able to move to New Smyrna.’ That was seven years ago. You know, I’m still trying, darling.” I want to move out of Greater Waterbury where my family has been living since my grandparents immigrated to the U.S. from Palazzo Adriano, Sicily in 1920. My brother John got out. He lives in the aptly named Oldsmar near Tampa. “There everything is about sports, especially baseball, football & bowling. I don’t like sporting events. John really enjoys watching them on the television in the afternoon.” Hippies prefer to go to the beach & tiki bars for conversation. Nobody really watches sports in New Smyrna. “That’s one of the things I like about that town.”
In case you haven’t heard of it, New Smyrna Beach is 15 miles southeast of Daytona Beach, the same direction & distance that Palazzo Adriano is from Corleone, where Vito Andolini was born before he immigrated all alone to New York City in 1901 at just 9 years old (Oreste Baldini) as Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather Part II begins. This great motion picture won 6 Oscars at the 47th Academy Awards in 1975, including Best Picture, Director, Adapted Screenplay (Coppola & Mario Puzo), and Supporting Actor (Robert DeNiro). It was nominated for 5 more (including Al Pacino, Talia Shire & Lee Strasberg). When 9 year old Vito gets to Ellis Island, his hometown of Corleone is mistaken for his surname & legally changed forever. We next see Vito at 25 (DeNiro) in Little Italy standing up to neighborhood extortionist Don Fanucci (Gastone Moschin) and his legend is born. The film juxtaposes Vito in Little Italy & his youngest son Michael Corleone (Pacino), Don of the Corleone business in the late 50’s. Vito is fair & compassionate; Michael is brutal & paranoid! His marriage to Kay (Diane Keaton) and his relationships with his siblings, Fredo (John Cazale) & Connie (Shire), are rocky. Lee Strasberg, who ran the famed Method Acting school, The Actor’s Studio, in Hell’s Kitchen from 1951 until his death on 2/17/82, plays Miami businessman Hyman Roth. Elia Kazan, founded the school on 10/5/47 where his 1st protégé was Marlon Brando. He also directed the original Broadway production of Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire which starred Brando from 12/3/47 – 12/17/49; and 2 years later they collaborated on the film version. With The Method, created by Russian stage actor & director Constantin Stanislavski and refined by Strasberg, Kazan & Stella Adler (Brando’s favorite teacher), actors immerse themselves in their characters by relating their personal experiences to the roles even when not rehearsing & acting. So now, “I make you an offer you don’ refuse”: Watch the trailer below for a taste of Al Pacino, Co-President of the Actors Studio, as Michael Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather Part II, then add the masterpiece to your Netflix Queue. 4 Stars!