Joe Mantegna (Bugsy, Forget Paris, The Godfather, Part 3, and the TV series Criminal Minds) is starring in the upcoming mobster mystery 10 Cent Pistol. RT talked to him recently about his Five Favorite Films. As he’d never really considered what his favorite movies were before, he went with the tried-and-true criteria of, “stuff that if, when I catch it on TV, would I keep watching it?” Here’s the straight-shooting list from this veteran actor.
It probably would be one of the original Robin Hoods, with Errol Flynn, from 1938. Errol Flynn was my hero, and then when I was fortunate enough to get a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, I asked to be put next to his, which they did. If you’re going to go back to what was my first favorite movie, that was it, and still would be in my top five, without question.
I never had really thought about if I had to name five movies that I really love, but the Godfather trilogy would certainly be in there. I’d have to put the trilogy in because I’m in the third one, so you know. I’m not going to shill myself, but collectively I just think that they were incredible. I feel very blessed to have been part of it, because certainly 1 and 2 were two of the greatest movies ever made. 3, let the other people judge that. I would consider that trilogy as one thing, though, you know what I mean?
The Producers is one of my favorite movies, and I don’t mean the musical. I mean the original one that Mel Brooks directed, with Zero Mostel. I saw it when it first came out. I saw it in the movie theaters, back in the ’60s. I just think as a comedy, and also being in the business as I am, and coming from theater, it just had that much more impact for me. That’s a movie I like very much.
There was a really good film, and a film I really liked called Time After Time. With Mary Steenburgen, and she wound up marrying the British actor from Clockwork Orange, Malcolm McDowell. My wife and I both really loved the film. It was a great film, and then the fact that they got married in real life. They didn’t stay married, but they had a couple kids together, and I’d like to think that at least for that period, that was real… where life imitated art. Because it’s such a beautiful movie, a love story. Two people from very divergent, different worlds, and I know them both, Mary and Malcolm, and they are two people from very divergent worlds. That’s probably why the marriage didn’t work out. Yet, there’s something about that that I thought was kind of sweet. It was a really good movie, too.
I think you’ve got to go with the classics. You’ve got to go with The Wizard of Oz. That’s the one that I can think of as a kid you always looked forward to, because when I was a kid, they only aired it at Thanksgiving. You had to wait. There was no DVRs, there was no Netflix. Until the network ran it on Thanksgiving, you didn’t see it. You couldn’t record it, nothing. The fact that it still holds up; it’s one of those movies you can’t redo. You can redo it, but it’s not going to be the same. We found that out with Peter Pan, when they tried to do that.
10 Cent Pistol opens in wide release on July 24, 2015.