Term Paper: Scarface Latin American Culture

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Scarface- Latin American Culture

Scarface (1932) film is an American gangster movie, written by Ben Hecht, directed by Richard Rosson and Howard Hawks, and produced by Howard Hughes. The film is founded on the 1929 novel written by Armitage Trail (White 30). The film stars Paul Muni as Antonio, Tony' Camonte. Brian de Palma remakes the film in 1983 in different setting in the Latin American and Miami drug cartel, with Al Pacino, Tony Montana, as the star (Myers 335). The Al Pacino Scarface film retells the story of an immigrant into the United States who attain wealth and power because of his indulgency in drug trafficking.

Al Pacino, acting as Montana, is a Cuban refugee who traffics drug from Colombia to Miami in the United States. The film Scarface I and II invites the observer to evaluate the two films and review the similarities and differences between them. The differences in Scarface II are richly inventive and provide far tremendous value and thematic rewards than what Scarface I provide. As to the similarities between the two movies they portray a clear correspondence, in that, they are both abundant and vary from personal pictorials through comprehensive scenes to general plot structures.

Introduction

Scarface I Film produced in 1983 is a remake of Scarface II film version produced in 1932. The production period between the two movies is the major aspect that establishes the key differences and similarities between the original and modernized film. The 1932 version of Scarface occurs in the course of prohibition period when there is complete ban of alcohol in most of the states. As the movie unfolds, men indulge in selling bear unlawfully in order to obtain robust profit. Considering the unlawful sell of beer, the police agencies engage in fighting and ignoring the unlawful beer distribution. As Tony Comante heads Johnny Lovo's new territory extorting businesses already dealing in illegal businesses and these increases his reputation and fortune making Johnny Lovos' gang try to terminate his life.

On the other hand, the 1932 version consists of replicated events before being released and basing its story from a renowned gangster Al Capone. Changes occur in the 1983 film when the version adapts to something that relates to its time. The 1983's version of Scarface II based its story on the Cuban immigration and drug trafficking in Miami, Florida. We have Tony Montana involved in various jobs in the world by doing one job at a time. Tony Montana will shift from killing to drug deals where he yield enough money to build his own empire and separates himself from his bosses, but that lasts for a short while he is gunned down in his own empire. This remake encounters numerous changes for it to convince the audience about its reformation from the initial one instead of demonstrating an era gangster film. For this reason, this paper evaluates the differences and similarities between Scarface I and II.

Similarities

In their plot, the two movies are similarly matching. The both stage an insolvent immigrant's murderous rise to wealth and authority in a big city within the criminal world. In Scarface I, Italian Tony Camonte murders his criminal adviser Johnny Lovo in order to take over the bootleg beer in Prohibition-era Chicago -- and to obtain Lovo's stylish light-colored girlfriend. In Scarface II film, post-Castro Cuban exile Tony Montana similarly kills his criminal world mentor Frank Lopez, marries his dead patron's equally light-colored and elegant girlfriend Elvira Hancock, and in collaboration with the intercontinental drug entrepreneur Alejandro Sosa paves his way to taking over the narcotics trade in "cocaine boom" Miami. Each criminal's sensational story is thus a savage misrepresentation of the "rags-to-riches" story long consecrated in the American culture of sovereignty and opportunity. However, cinematic formula declares that the gangster's rise has its end and both Camonte and Montana encounters a final trounce and death in a hail of bullets.

Characterization is similarly unclear in the two films. In the Manichean world of Scarface I, the observer -- and the characters themselves -- are certain of the difference between the criminals and police officer, between evil and good, as they were certain about the difference between darkness and light, black and white. In the Scarface II film, however, one doubts about the character's ethical status -in both the criminal world and the decent society surrounding it. The two films are considered the most potent, boldest, violent and brutal mobster crime films. The sensational productions record the conventional, but catastrophic rise and fall of disreputable gangster figures (White 30).

Differences

Notwithstanding several similarities amid Scarface I and Scarface II, the two movies display numerous differences. Apparently, the moral perspectives in the two movies are fundamentally divergent. The position in the 1932 Scarface is as traditionally honest and considerate of the set up authority, an inclination that modern guardians of public righteousness such as J. Edgar Hoover and the Hays office would support.

Despite sharing the same concept, the moral perspectives of the two films are radically divergent. Scarface 1932 condemns gang violence and this is evidenced through its subtitle, 'The Shame of a Nation." The movie seems to challenge the society to condemn and fight corruption that gives way to establishment of illegal trade in the society (Bender 40). The main character in the movie, Tony Camonte, is cornered and killed by police officers. As a result, the story line evidently congratulates police officers and detectives, the Media and other law enforcement agencies in their fights to end crime and corruption in the society.

The theme of evil and good is evident in the 1932 Scarface where police and other law enforcement agencies fights the evils perpetrated by the gangsters. The film's black and white cinematography tributes that desolate contrast between the forces of good and evil. The mobsters in the 1932 Scarface are individuals of darkness and shadow who carry out their assignations and shooting at night. While the gangsters are fighting at night, virtue defenders fight the gangsters in brilliant indoor lighting or broad day light.

However, in the 1983 Scarface, the moral perspective and visual design in the film are more intricate. In Scarface II, color photography undermines the representation of dark and light imagery that controlled the 1932 Scarface, both morally and visually. Uncertainty and inversion reign through contrast in de Palma Scarface where the drug lord, Frank Lopez probably influences a luminous white suit in form of a highly regarded businessperson dining in a fashionable steakhouse to put on a black suite. Such reversals go beyond individual dressing to the whole scenes (Prince 231).

For instance, a promisingly constructive episode such as Montana delayed reunion with his immigrant mother and Gina Montana, his sister, is performed at night. However, his final fatal introduction to drug lord, Sosa, takes place during the day. These inversions are predicted in Montana's first drug deal. While the criminal meeting is planned to take place during the night, it happens during the day, in the "Sun Ray Motel." Notwithstanding the luminous situations, the feeling is dangerously defective. Cordial smiles hide treachery and murder plans. A woman stretches out in a seductive manner on a bed where she has hidden an assault rifle while the Cuban buyers defeat the Colombian suppliers' deadly ambush (White 31).

Scarface 1983 features copious violence, including a dishonorable chainsaw killing that triggered the MPAA to threaten the movie with an X rating unless De Palma trimmed the gore, but he never did. Scarface 1983 emerged as a prototypical eighties film, as much in tune with and as contemplative of its period as the Howard Hawks' original was of Depression America. De Palma's updates of image relocated its activities to Miami and made its gangster hero, a Cuban expelled from Castro's Cuba as portion of Mariel boat exodus of 1980. The movie is vivid in evoking the 1980s as a decade of greed, avarice and moral corruption.

Tony Montana is perfect for the time, in which the movie is set, a shark, all appetite, ferocious, dead-eyed, killing his way to the top of illegal drug trade. "Me, I want what's coming to me. The world and everything that's in it" (Prince 230). Tony shortly attains his desire with the assistance of compliant U.S. businesses. The film indicts the American capitalism for being a partner with Tony Montana and the South America drug kingpins (Bender 40). Legal American banks help Montana in laundering Montana's drug money while a U.S. government representative is shown in attendance at a policy session called by a drug lord and his accomplice in Bolivian military and government.

Awash with cruelty, the Scarface 1983 is unremittingly cold and savage. The chainsaw killing is one of the most infamous violence scenes. De Palma included this scene in the movie to dramatize the intensified violence spawned through the narcotic trade (Prince 231). Montana frenzied emotions as he watch Angel's killing, and the blood spattered on floor and wall gives the scene its terrible power. The… [END OF PREVIEW]

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