Three decades of life in the mafia.

Release Date: 1990-09-12
Original Language: English
User Score: 8.467/10 (12189 votes)
Popularity: 69.748
Genres: Drama, Crime
Where to watch: US US / United States:

Overview: The true story of Henry Hill, a half-Irish, half-Sicilian Brooklyn kid who is adopted by neighbourhood gangsters at an early age and climbs the ranks of a Mafia family under the guidance of Jimmy Conway.

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A Review by John Chard
Written on 2014-11-16

In a world that's powered by violence, on the streets where the violent have power, a new generation carries on an old tradition. Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas is without question one of the finest gangster movies ever made, a benchmark even. It’s that rare occasion for a genre film of this type where everything artistically comes together as one. Direction, script, editing, photography, driving soundtrack and crucially an ensemble cast firing on all cylinders. It’s grade “A” film making that marked a return to form for Scorsese whilst simultaneously showing the director at the summit of his directing abilities. The story itself, based on Nicholas Pileggi’s non-fiction book Wiseguy, pulls absolutely no punches in its stark realisation of the Mafia lifestyle. It’s often brutal, yet funny, unflinching yet stylish, but ultimately from first frame to last it holds the attention, toying with all the human emotions during the journey, tingling the senses of those who were by 1990 fed up of popcorn movie fodder. It’s not romanticism here, if anything it’s a debunking of the Mafia myth, but even as the blood flows and the dialogue crackles with electricity, it always remains icy cool, brought to us by a man who had is eyes and ears open while growing up in Queens, New York in the 40s and 50s. Eccellente! 9/10

A Review by Ahmetaslan27
Written on 2023-03-15

Martin Scorsese (director) always loves details in crime films, but he is not primarily interested in the crime itself. That is why his films are always produced with details that you may see as unimportant to you, especially if you want to see the movie for the purpose of seeing scenes of theft, murder, and so on, but you see the opposite. Somewhat other details are visible on the scene mostly The film talks about liberation, stereotypes, and entering a new world for humanity. It was Ray Liotta (Henry). He wanted, as I said, to break free from stereotypes and enter the world of gangs. Martin Scorsese (the director) filmed this unfamiliar life and directed it in the form of a film similar to documentaries because he filmed it as if it were a real, realistic life. That is why the presence of Voice Over was important in order to give you the feeling that there is a person sitting next to you telling you the story while whispering in your ear as it happens in the movies documentaries.

A Review by CinemaSerf
Written on 2023-08-26

Ray Liotta is superb here as "Henry Hill", a man whom ever since he was young has been captivated by the mob. He starts off as a runner and before too long has ingratiated himself with the local fraternity lead by "Paulie" (Paul Sorvino) and is best mates with fellow hoods, the enigmatic and devious "Jimmy" (Robert De Niro) and the excellently vile "Tommy" (Joe Pesci). They put together an audacious robbery at JFK and are soon the talk of the town, but the latter in the trio is a bit of a live-wire and when he goes just a bit too far one night, the three of them find that their really quite idyllic lives of extortion and larceny start to go awry - and it's their own who are on their tracks. Scorsese takes him time with this story: the development of the characters - their personalities, trust, inter-reliance, sometimes divided, fractured, loyalties and ruthlessness and are built up in a thoroughly convincing fashion. We can, ourselves, see the obvious attractions for the young "Henry" of a life so very far removed from his working class Irish-Italian background - the wine, the women, the thrills; it's tantalising! If anything let's it down it's the last half hour; it's just a little too predictable and having spent so long building up the characters, we seem to be in just a bit too much of a rush; but that is a nit-pick. It's not the "Godfather" but it is not far short.

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