Al Pacino is one of the great actors of all time, but his rise to fame certainly wasn’t handed to him. The New York native gained a devoted following as a member of Lee Strasberg’s Actor’s Studio in the late 60s, which ultimately led to his “discovery” while already in his mid 20s. After only one lead performance in a film, Pacino was cast as Michael Corleone in Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather.
Interesting fact: Pacino’s grandparents were actually from Corleone, Sicily.
You. Netflix Instant. Pacino. Cherish the experience.
“The Panic in Needle Park” (1971)
Are you a fan of Bob Dylan? Check out A Panic in Needle Park by legendary Dylan photographer Jerry Schatzberg. The film features Al Pacino in his first lead role. Jim Morrison was originally considered for “Bobby” – a heroin addict who likes to hang out at New York City’s Sherman Square on the Upper West Side. The Panic in Needle Park was heavily criticized for its depiction of drug use, but ultimately achieved success after Kitty Winn won Best Actress at the 1971 Cannes Film Festival. Pacino’s Bobby is highly charismatic, but the topic matter is certainly less than joyful. Watch HERE.
Al Pacino won his first Golden Globe Award for his performance as Frank Serpico, a New York City cop who learned of the corruption in his department after going undercover. Pacino sports an excellent beard in Serpico, and the look could have won many awards back in the early 70s. Unfortunately, the “undercover” beard was quite common back then, and the full scope of beard excellence was not appreciated until later years. Sidney Lumet’s film was actually shot in reverse order, so Pacino slowly lost his Samson-like beard power. In all seriousness, Serpico is an amazing story of one man who refused to give in to pressure and fought for what he believed in. Watch it HERE.
“Glengarry Glen Ross” (1992)
“ABC – Always Be Closing.” That one extraordinary line from Glengarry Glen Ross provided endless mind-boners for businessmen nationwide, and don’t forget that Gordon Gekko’s “Greed Is Good” soliloquy from Wall Street was only five years old. Films like 2000s Boiler Room attempted to build on the “Mind Viagra” theme, and the modern cinephile-businessman is always seeking out that “one true sentence” like so many Hemingways. Scholars maintain that Ernest Hemingway didn’t need any “Mind Viagra”, as he was just crazy enough to get work done on his own. Did I mention that Al Pacino is in this film? Enjoy 138 f-bombs from writer David Mamet HERE.
“Two Bits” (1995)
Do you desire less Pacino-Shakespeare and more gruff-voice Pacino? You will find it in Two Bits. The actor plays an ailing grandpa from South Philly that ain’t quite ready to hand over his quarter aka “two bits.” The character is known only as “grandpa” and dishes out life lessons to his his grandson Gennaro. Two Bits delivers for one who desires sentimental Pacino, and the viewer might even walk away with a higher IQ. Young cinema minds may be disturbed to learn that a ticket to the ol’ movie house once cost only “two bits.” Watch Pacino discuss life HERE.
“Looking For Richard” (1996)
Looking For Richard is not some sort of porno starring Pal Alcino, but an actual documentary where Al Pacino channels his inner Shakespeare. Looking For Richard was directed by Ally P, produced by the Pacman and stars the former up-and-comer named Corey Feldman. Wait…apologies. Al Pacino was indeed the star. Looking For Richard is pure Pacino and an experience that should be enjoyed by all. The actor originally shot over 80 hours of footage, and let’s be thankful that he didn’t leave the film uncut. Watch Pacino own the written word HERE.
BONUS: “Gigli” (2003)
Gigli is an experience that one must experience cold. Look at Al’s face. Just look at it.
Enjoy screaming Pacino, and enjoy Gigli – one of the great films of the 21st century.
Have your mind instantly blown HERE.
Follow Quinn on Twitter