To be honest, I've always found the Godfather to be one of the most grossly over-rated movies of all time.
But that appears to be just me.
Yes, it is you. The first two films are masterpieces. Not just from a casting, writing, acting and directing standpoint but they are cinematographically beautiful films. Gordon Willis does an amazing job with very little light. Godfather II is an even darker film in terms of its plot and cinematography. Willis shows how the use of the lack of light can create a sense of dread and evil on screen.
I know I sound like a geek but I have been a fan of cinematography for some time. For a great lesson on this, check out a documentary called Visions of Light: The Art of Cinematography.