Scarface is the 1932 pre-code crime movie directed by Howard Hawks. Tony Camonte is a gangster working for Lovo. However, he is a maverick, attacking the Irish mob even when his boss tells him no. He doesn’t want his sister Cesca to be like him, so he gets so overprotective to the point that he alienates her. Tony then declares war on the Irish mob and wins. Lovo, angry that Tony is unofficially taking over his gang, attempts to assassinate Tony, but is killed himself. His actions have not gone unnoticed by the police, so they hunt him down. Will Tony be able to keep his new position or will he die just like his boss?
Many viewers may not be familiar with the 1932 version of Scarface, which is actually pretty good. It is not only an anti-crime film, but a classic tragedy as well. Tony lets his pride and viciousness do him in. While it is assumed that Tony’s Italian, Hawks is smart enough to shoo that not all Italian-Americans are criminals. Modern viewers will probably think Tony is smothering his sister, since she’s an adult and can do what she wants. It’s also hypocritical since its okay for Tony to do crime but not for Cesca to have some fun. Honolulu crime film fans should watch this movie.
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