Cuomo, 81, long refused to watch Francis Ford Coppola's film due to his vocal opposition to stereotyping Italian-Americans as being involved in organized crime. But he said Sunday at the 2013 Forum Film Festival at the Forum on Law, Culture and Society at Fordham Law School in New York that he has finally watched the movie, The New York Times reported Tuesday.
Cuomo admitted that "maybe this thing was a masterpiece."
The former governor, speaking on a panel that also included Larry King, said the film was "great, if you're referring to artistry." However, he said he stands by his criticism that "The Godfather" and similar works deliver a "horrible" message by depicting Italian-Americans as sanctioning murder and breaking the law in the pursuit of revenge.
"You demean our system of law and order by saying if you want to get justice you mow down the bums," Cuomo said.