On The Couch #44: Scarface

I’m not sure why I never saw Scarface before now. I’ve seen a lot of rap videos. I like rap. I have friends who like rap. How is it that I’ve managed to avoid this movie for so long, a movie which seems to be rapped about more than any other?

…with the possible exception of The Little Mermaid.

When I told a friend this morning that I just watched Scarface for the first time, he looked at me incredulously and said “You just watched it for the first time? That movie is awesome! It’s one of my favorites!” He then slipped into a faux-Cuban accent and said “My name is…Don Corleone. Let me introduce you to my papi.” “Wow,” I replied, “It’s one of your favorite movies and you managed to butcher both of those lines. Impressive.”

It’s interesting that when Scarface was first released, these characters in it were a break from the gangster movie cliché, but have now become the current gangster movie cliché.

Scarface is definitely firmly rooted in the 1980s. The fashion. The hairstyles. The neon lights. The non-stop coke binges. Some of those things should never leave the 80s. Specifically Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio’s hair.

How much coke do you have to snort before this perm looks good? The world may never know…

Tony Montana is a complete dick in the movie. Why does every fan of Scarface idolize Tony? They should idolize Manny. Manny was awesome. He was a fun loving, hard working ladies man. So of course Tony had to kill him. Why? Because Tony’s a dick and that’s what dicks do: murder their awesome best friends. The worst thing Manny did in the movie wasn’t dating Gina behind Tony’s back; it was hitching his boat to Tony’s sail in the first place.

Which brings me to Tony’s weird relationship with his sister Gina. When Gina first appears in Scarface, I had no idea she was Tony’s sister. Tony was talking to her like she was the girl who got away. When it was revealed they were brother and sister, I was skeeved as much as Han Solo must have been when he found out Luke and Leia were brother and sister. “Wait, so you two are related? Then why do you look at each other that way?” It was obvious from Gina’s first scene that Tony wanted to have sex with her.

Kiss her, you fool! Wait, she’s your sister?!

But it took a long time and Tony’s murder of her newlywed husband for Gina to realize that. Despite Gina shooting him in the leg, I’m pretty sure that Tony would have had sex with Gina when she burst into his office yelling “Fuck me!” Unfortunately for Tony, that Bolivian hit man had to mess up his game by bursting in after her and shooting her dead. The most surprising part of that scene is that Tony didn’t have sex with Gina’s bloody corpse.

I get why this movie is a cult favorite, but I wouldn’t call this the greatest gangster movie of all time. That title goes to Goodfellas in my book, but I can understand if you were to choose The Godfather instead. It’s funny that both The Godfather and Scarface both have three hour running times, but it’s only Scarface where I really noticed I was watching a three hour movie.