Corleone, Il capo dei capi (2007)

Another great Italian mafia series, although this one is a bit more recent.

In six episodes of 90 minutes each the story is told of the Corleone clan and their rise to the top of the Sicilian mafia . It focuses expecially on Totò Riina and how he managed to become Capo dei Capi, boss of the bosses.

The story begins in 1943. Totò Riina and this friends are very poor and they live in Corleone. The boss of the village is doctor Michele Navarra, who belongs to the mafia. It is his godson Luciano Liggio who sees how the boys can be useful and he often hires them to do certain jobs for him. Finally Liggio murders Navarra and from that moment Liggion runs the show. They want to expand to Palermo and they need to find a way into the organization. The mafia families of Palermo do not take the peasants from Corleone serious in the beginning.

Liggio becomes older and is more preoccupied with the good life and from that moment it is Totò Riina who calls the shots. He stops at nothing to play the families against each other to his own advantage and even orders the murders of anti-mafia judges Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino.

Claudio Gioe as Totò Riina
Biagio Schiro is another boy from Corleone, only he took another path. He joined the police and in the fifty years that follow he constantly tries to capture the Mafiosi.

Almost everything is based on true events. Only the character of Biagio Schiro is invented, he was made out of all the brave policemen who fought against the mafia. In this series it makes sure you have a good balance. The lives of Totò Riina and Biagio Schiro are parallel in so many ways, but so different at the same time.

The problem I have with the mafia films and series like the Godfather or the Soprano’s, (good as they might be), is that your sympathy lies with the bad guys. In this series there is no sympathy at all for the bad guys. It mainly shows how ruthless the mafia was and is and how much influence it has.

A scene that makes a lot of impact is when Biagio and his boss are in his kitchen and they drink to all their friends who died. The list of names is long, but we, the viewers know the murders of Falcone and Borsellino are still to come.

Daniele Liotto as Biagio Schiro and behind him his boss,
Boris Guiliano played by Pietro de Silva
Corleone, il capo dei capi is an amazing series. It glues you to your seat with its storylines and acting. Claudio Gioe plays Totò Riina and captures his ability to do the most terrible things, but not like a raging lunatic but almost like a reasonable person. Daniele Liotti plays Biagio Sciro and he is also amazing. He will make you love Biagio.
Other good roles are Pietro de Silva as Boris Guilliano, Andrea Tidona as Giovanni Falcone and Gaetano Aronica as Paolo Borsellino.