Why it’s famous:
Scarface is probably one of the most famous, adored, and dramatic gangster movies of all time. It’s a story of greed, corruption, and hunger for power and features a sometimes unintentionally hilarious Al Pacino in the role of a ferocious Cuban gangster making his way up the social ladder of the Miami mafia scene. This violent classic captures what could have been the raw, uncensored reality of life as an embittered, angry refugee-turned-leader of a drug cartel.
Tony Montana: I always tell the truth. Even when I lie.
Tony Montana: The only thing in this world that gives orders … is balls.
Tony Montana: Say hello to my little friend!
Why you haven’t seen it:
Mark Twain said a classic is “a book which people praise and don’t read.” This definitely applies to film, where you can easily understand references to famous flicks without ever having watched them from beginning to end. The phony accent, the spiffy clothes, the famous quotes, everything about this movie is so famous, you almost feel like you don’t need to see it to get it.
Why it might be tough to get through:
If blood spatter and gunshots aren’t your idea of fun, 170 minutes of it might not be your cup of tea. It’s violent, it’s gritty, it involves ‘70s suits, it features Pacino with the phoniest accent ever captured by Hollywood, and it revolves around greed in the complex business of the big city underworld.
Why you should see it anyway:
It’s violent, it’s gritty, it involves ‘70s suits, it features Pacino with the phoniest accent ever captured by Hollywood and it revolves around greed in the complex business of the big city underworld — what more do you really need?
In all seriousness, it is an incredibly powerful movie that touches a variety of themes including family values, love, and marriage. Michelle Pfeiffer is also the epitome of perfection as Elvira, the deliciously snobby mob wife who stands as a stark reminder of just how empty the scramble for riches may be.
• The word “fuck” and its derivatives are used 226 times for an average of 1.32 fucks per minute.
• Despite the title, Tony Montana is called “Scarface” only once throughout the movie, and in Spanish: “Caracicatriz.”
• The Miami Tourist Board decided not to allow filming in the city of Miami, as they were afraid the movie would discourage tourism.