Frank Pentangeli was loyal in The Godfather: Part 2. He obeyed Michael's order and went to make peace with the Rosato brothers. But then there was an attempt to kill Frank and it looked like Michael ordered it to Frank. So this incident might influence Frankie to betray Michael. But in depth he was loyal. He even backed off from his witness thing.

Still Michael ordered and killed him. Didn't he understand that Frankie Five Angels was loyal? Why didn't he feel any sympathy for Frankie? What was the motive? What am I missing?

  • 5
    Michael didn't have him killed. Frank killed himself while under witness protection, albeit on Michael's suggestion that his family would be taken care of. The fact that he agreed to be a witness in the first place was a betrayal in Michael's eyes and Frank knew that. When Michael offered him an honorable out where his family would be provided for, he took it.
    – dbugger
    Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 15:46
  • 5
    Possible duplicate of Why did Frank Pentangeli kill himself in Godfather 2?
    – Paulie_D
    Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 15:51
  • I saw that questions and agree with that ..but still somehow i feel that my question is different. How ever if you think its duplicate, its ok. Thanks @Paulie_D Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 16:01
  • I don't exactly understand what you are asking here. Are you asking about the first attempt at killing him in that bar or about his later suicide after the hearing? In the former case, your premise might be a little flawed, since it's not even clear that Michael ordered the hit, rather than Roth, as explained in this question. In the latter case, it seems pretty much a duplicate of the question Paulie_D linked to.
    – Napoleon Wilson
    Commented Mar 19, 2017 at 17:42

1 Answer 1


Pentangelli had to be punished for agreeing to testify against Michael, even if he didn't go through with it. His cooperation with the authorities had put Michael at serious risk, and letting that go unpunished would send the wrong message to everyone else in Michael's world.

At the same time, as OP notes, Pentangelli had been loyal before, and had been duped into turning against Michael, so Michael showed some mercy on him by giving him the option of saving his family.

  • You could add the underlying theme of the movie is Michael's alienation from those around him. Contrasting with Vito's building unity with people he meets.
    – BevynQ
    Commented Oct 8, 2018 at 21:15

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