Author: Angela Peticca

SCARFACE and the Italian

In the United States during the early 1930s, Prohibition became a gateway for criminal activity that led to a fight for control over the different aspects of illegal goods and services. This new era of criminal underworld, brimming with riches ripe for the taking, attracted the likes of those such as Al Capone, Charles “Lucky” Luciano, and Frank Costello. America became fascinated with these gangsters and their illegal organizations, in part due to the economic status of the early 1930s, with the gangster representing a challenge to social institutions and the instability of the government and economy. Unlike the usual criminal, the gangster was smart and organized, an example of success and wealth, sought out public and media attention, and evolved into the embodiment of a Great Depression anti-hero.[1] Even though the Great Depression gravely impacted the United States’ economy and most industries, Hollywood managed to stay afloat through various marketing strategies and by providing a sought-after diversion.[2] To increase movie attendance, Hollywood quickly capitalized on America’s recent era of captivation with gangsters. Being the …

Angela Peticca is a recent graduate of Oakland University who minored in Cinema Studies.