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Boss of Bosses Reviews

The Mafia has always fascinated filmmakers and the viewing public, and the success of The Sopranos made gangsters hotter than they'd been since the release of THE GODFATHER. TNT’s attempt to cash in on mobster madness falls laughably short of the bar raised by the HBO series. In the right hands, the story of real-life mob boss Paul Castellano (Chazz Palminteri) would be a compelling one. His story begins in Brooklyn, where young Paul (Yani Gellman) and some pals have been recruited to help out Paul’s mobbed-up cousin Carlo Gambino (Al Ruscia). When Paul shows a charitable initiative which helps foster good-will in the neighborhood, Gambino’s boss, Vito Genovese (Steven Hauer) is suitably impressed. Flash ahead a couple dozen years and we see that the adult Castellano is doing pretty well for himself—big house, expensive cars, nice kids, a sweet, long-suffering wife—when Gambino names him capo di capi, the "Boss of Bosses." Castellano vows to turn the mob into a respectable business organization, involving them in legit ventures like construction and waste removal. His first act is to forbid drug dealing, which doesn’t sit too well with more junior members. Home life is chilly as well so he takes up with Gloria (Angela Alvarado Rosa), a young Colombian he’s convinced his wife to hire as a maid. Shtupping the help doesn’t sit too well with Mrs. Castellano (Patricia Maurceri), so she moves out. The viewer is left hoping and praying that the real life love affair between Gloria and Paul was not as embarrassing as the one portrayed on-screen. The film is weighed down by cliched "dese, dem, dose" dialogue and wooden performances. If Italian American groups were offended by Sopranos stereotypes, wait until they see this film — fuhgedaboudit!