Godfather of Harlem Review
After ten years in jail at Alcatraz, reputable gangster Bumpy Johnson returns to his native Harlem, where he used to be the real king. But now everything has changed: the Italian Mafia, led by the Genovese family, has taken over much of the underworld. This is a brief retelling of the excellent series, which you can find on thepiratebays proxy. If you want to read more about the project, let’s talk about the plot.
The Plot of the Film
Johnson will have to once again take power into his own hands and restore order, which was lost under the new masters. Doing so will not be easy, so Bumpy enlists the support of authoritative Islamic preacher Malcolm X and his associates from the radical religious organization The Nation of Islam. In turn, Congressman Adam Clayton Powell tries to profit in this crucible of passions, balancing the factions and earning reputation points for his political career.
By and large, nothing particularly revolutionary was done by the creators of Godfather of Harlem. It’s such a classic crime drama with masculine characters who “solve problems” of a different nature: from drug trafficking to the production of pornography.
If you like, it’s a kind of “The Sopranos,” minus the domesticity of the main characters, reduced to a minimum: they all have wives, husbands, and children, but it’s not what goes on inside that matters, but how it affects “family” affairs. Plus a beautiful historical entourage: retro cars, austere costumes, and vintage jazz. Speaking of music: in addition to the authentic soundtrack, the authors occasionally include songs by artists of the modern American hip-hop scene (ranging from DMX to 21 Savage), put together by famous producer Kassim Dowd Dean – aka Swizz Beatz.
Postmodern in Godfather of Harlem
Why the need for such a postmodern twist? The fact is that there simply wasn’t a hero like Bumpy Johnson in the mob shows before, he’s a modern-day hero. Ellsworth Johnson (real name Gangster) previously became a character in two films called “Gangster,” 1997 and 2007; where he played Laurence Fishburne and Clarence Williams.
But that was a passing action movie and practically a cameo in a biopic about an entirely different man. In the series, Johnson appears as the intelligent hoodlum of the gangster world; who did not try to get rid of crime, considering it impossible; but tried to take it under his control to at least minimize the degree of mayhem and chaos. Regarding this work as playing a chess game (which he was also a pro at).
Thus, unlike the same Tony Soprano, who was always looking for ways to enrich his family and increase his influence; Bumpy Johnson is closer to the same Malcolm X; the preacher who tried to organize disparate pro-Islamic cells of black people. In short, comparing “Godfather of Harlem” to “The Sopranos” or, say, “Boardwalk Empire” wouldn’t be quite right;-it’s more like “House of Cards” about the world of crime.
And it’s a hell of a lot of fun to watch – especially, of course; the Oscar-winning Forest Whitaker in the title role; a first-tier actor who turns this story into a great TV novel about; how an honest criminal is sometimes better than a dirty cop.