July 9, 2022

By “Huckabee” pop culture guru Pat Reeder (

I had to come back from vacation to mention that actor James Caan died Wednesday at 82.

Caan’s most indelible role was as the tragically hotheaded Sonny Corleone in “The Godfather,” a role that he complained typecast him so much that he was twice voted “Italian of the Year” despite not being Italian. But his filmography is filled with great films of all genres, from thrillers to dramas to comedies, including “Thief,” “Rollerball,” “Brian’s Song,” “Honeymoon in Vegas,” “Misery,” “Bottle Rocket,” “The Gambler,” “Elf” and many more.

Variety film critic Owen Gleiberman takes a look at Caan’s career and makes the case for his talent, versatility and huge contributions to movies and TV over the past six decades.