Adapted from Mario Puzo's novel, The Sicilian is an attempt to chronicle the life and times of Mafia leader, patriot and real-life Robin Hood Salvatore Giuliano, the infamous bandit who, together with his rag-tag band of guerillas, attempted to liberate 1940s Sicily from Italian rule and make it an American state. Giuliano (Christopher Lambert) robs from the rich conservative landowners to give to the poor, serf-like peasants, who in turn hail him as their savior. As his popularity grows, so does his ego, and he eventually thinks he is above the power of his backer, Mafia Don Masino Croce (Joss Ackland). The Don, in turn, sets out to kill the upstart by convincing his cousin and closest advisor Gaspare (John Turturro) to assassinate him. Nearly thirty minutes of screen time were haphazardly hacked off director Michael Cimino's original cut by the studio.