If you are what you like than this is who I am. This is a series about 25 films that have impacted me the most so far.
A lot of people see this as the standard by which all modern gangster films are judged by. Even as a kid I never thought of this as a movie about criminals. I always saw it as a movie about family values. This is how the Don Corleone runs his life and by extension his family.
The strength of those family values is what makes this movie so compelling. How can you have so much character but no morals ? Before The Godfather I didn't know that could even exist. The movie works because it helps you look past the lifestyle they lead and like the personalities behind it.
The Godfather makes no one a hero or a villain just people living their life. And it's not repulsive despite the racism, sexism, misogyny and the active destruction of peoples lives because we respect what the man stands for. That is the sugar that gets the poison down.
But poison no matter how sweet in the right amount will kill you and The Don's lack of morals is his downfall. The sins of the father visit the child. Everything he has built for his family is exactly what destroys it. And despite the perennial ambition of every generation to make life better for the next, he can't get his family out of the life. So for all his "success" in the end he dies a failed man. Because he leaves his family with more material but not the better life he fought so hard for them to have.