Certainly one of the best mob movies of all time. I'd rank it higher than The Godfather for sure.
Martin Scorsese's 1990 film about the real-life Henry Hill who works his way up in the mafia swept nearly every critics award when it was released. It ultimately lost the Best Picture Oscar to Dances with Wolves.
Joe Pesci won every major film award for his work as Tommy Devito except the Golden Globe. He lost there to Bruce Davison for Longtime Companion.
Lorraine Bracco won many critics awards for playing Henry Hill's long suffering wife but lost the Oscar to Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost.
Robert DeNiro also took some awards for playing James Conway, including the New York Film Critics Award, but was nominated for an Oscar for his work in Awakenings instead.
Interestingly enough Ray Liotta carried the movie but never got a single nomination from any group for his tremendous work.
One of the best scenes was in the middle of the film when Martin's Scorsese's Catherine Scorsese pops up as Tommy Devito's mom.
The movie also includes the now classic "How am I funny?" scene.
Sam Jackson had a bit role as druggie Stacks Edwards.
Gina Mastrogiacomo, who played Janice Rossi, died in her 30s of a bacterial infection in her heart.
Martin's dad Charles Scorsese also played a bit part.
Pre-Sopranos Michael Imperioli had a memorable scene as doomed Spyder. His costar Vincent Pastore also appears.
Vincent Gallo, then Vinnie Gallo, was an extra in the film too.
Debi Mazar and Illeana Douglas had roles as mafia girlfriends.
Morrie's wigs don't come off.
The great American film of the last 30 years. Insanely well made and still has the power to shock and entertain after multiple viewings.
I thought Ray Liotta was cool-looking and a great actor. Never understood why he became a sort of thug Patrick Swayze joke.
I saw Goodfellas in the theater, and the line "It's like you died and woke up in Jew heaven" had the entire audience laughing.
Absolutely one of my all-time favorites. Saw it over 20 times in the theater (I can get a little obsessed).
Thanks for posting. My favorite movie, along with The Godfather. Sorry to hear about Gina Mastrogiacomo.
Great movie but it falls apart in the second half.
The tracking shot into the nightclub is flawless. Brilliant piece of filmmaking.
Lorraine Bracco's best role. "There's a whore living in Apt. 4-C and her name is Janice Rossi!"
It was a good and entertaining movie, but frankly I liked Casino much better.
Good movie, but after Joe Pesci is killed...sort of forgettable.
Gina was a good friend - and just starting to get big roles...it was a terrible loss. All because a nail salon didn't properly sterilize their instruments. She got a staff infection that went right to her heart from a manicure....be careful of that kind of thing. She is sorely missed.
Joe Pesci BEAT Bruce Davison (Longtime Companion) for the Oscar
[quote]Lorraine Bracco won many critics awards for playing Henry Hill's long suffering wife but lost the Oscar to Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost.
This may be the saddest sentence I've ever read.
She got a 'staff' infection that went
As I recall, the film was a training ground of sorts for the cast of the Sopranos. Lorraine Bracco, Michael Imperioli, Vincent Pastore, Tony Sirico and Frank Vincent, along with Carmela's mother and gay Vito were featured. Anyone I missed?
R13 He meant staph infection, we get it.
Great film. It was great to see Joe Pesci get his comeuppance in this film. What an unlovable scumbag he was.
R11 Joe Pesci was great in that role.Pesci might be a johnny one note actor(unlike Davidson,who's a much better actor) but that role was the one note he was born to play.
CASINO's first hour was non-stop narration
Forget your fucking hat! What are you, kidding me?!
I actually disagree with those that feel like the movie goes downhill in the last hour. I felt that way the first time I saw it, too. But every time I rewatch it, I'm struck by how brilliant the downward spiral is. You really feel that disorientation and dread in your gut, and I think it's easy to mistake it for the movie going off the rails. But it really couldn't be more assured. And Jesus Christ, has there ever been a better paranoid, coke-fueled freak-out than that whole helicopter sequence? Brilliant.
OP, why do you talk about this movies like we've never heard of it?
Probably my favorite film ever. I'll watch it anytime I see it while channel surfing. The only other film I do that for is "Blazing Saddles."
The "Layla" sequence is brilliant.
Oh and we can not forget big daddy Paul Sorvino.
The actress who played LOIS should have won the Oscar.
JUMP INTO THE FIRE!
DON'T YEAH YEAH ME, LOIS! THIS IS IMPORTANT!
Kudos to Nicolas Pileggi, too. That script could have easily veered into total cliché. It was one of those rare movies for me that used stereotypes with enough unique character to balance it out.
I liked Pesci, but I was always aware that it was a "Joe Pesci" role. It took me out of it a bit.
"Casino" is horrible, a bore. I like "After Hours" - not a typical Scorsese.
It is brilliant, yes, but Casino was underrated. Sharon Stone was magnificent in that film, really loathsome. I still don't think it gets the recognition it deserves- talk about evocative.
Back to Goodfellas, it really is the most wonderful moment when Tommy gets 'made'. Has there ever been a more deserving hit in the movies? I don't think so. His character was just so utterly vile, and enabled all the way through. You wonder how he lasts so long.
I also love the scene with the trashy mob wives. But there are so many good ones in there, and yeah it's weird Liotta never really went anywhere after that.
Certainly, Lorraine Bracco should have won the Oscar. But I don't think the film, as a whole, is better than "Godfather, Part II."
[quote] it's weird Liotta never really went anywhere after that.
What about Narc and the Emmy he won for E.R.
"Casino" is uninvolving, you don't care about the characters.
Morey Amsterdam was originally cast as Billy Batts, but mouthed off to Scorsese and Frank Vincent replaced him. ...it would have been interesting to see Amsterdam in a dramatic role.
I keep reading this thread title as "Let's talk about Godzilla".
I'd love to -- if anyone wants to start a thread about The Big Guy? He's much more my type (I've never seen "Goodfellas").
Morey Amsterdam was actually on Young and Restless and his part was so huge, he had no times to go shoot a Scorsese film.
and they all wear too much makeup and have bad skin.
Sharon Stone was goo in Casino, but she wasn't a sympathetic character.
Karen Hill was not only a likable character, she's the best female character in ANY gangster film before or since.
Not a film - but Carmela Soprano was a great character.
You love her and hate her...
R34--Sharon Stone's character WAS goo in "Casino" after the hot dose
One of the best films ever. Love Janice sashaying through her mistress apartment, showing off the furniture, while Debbie Mazar as the second girlfriend-to-be smells a perfume and identifies it as "French."
Great soundtrack too.
Can watch this anytime. A masterpiece.
Who was the little guy that followed De Niro around saying "I want my money"?
Later strangled in the car by Tommy, I believe.
[quote]Great movie but it falls apart in the second half.
I think its one of the few movies that actually builds momentum. The last sequence of the film, the drug deal/family dinner day, is justly famous.
"I don't care, its my lucky hat, I never fly without it."
That was the wig dude R39- And christ he wasn't strangled, they stabbed him in the head or severed his spinal cord or something. It was pretty unforgettable and graphic.
One of the few movies I watch every time its on TV. It's brilliant from beginning to end.
The scene with the wives is as bitchy as DL.
"Depressed? Give me a break, she's drunk."
"She don't eat. She don't eat."
"She spends her life in a nightgown!!!"
My favorite movie ever. So many amazing scenes, shots and moments. Love the scene where Liotta and Deniro meet in the diner when things are getting out of control, and the shot of the scenary outside the window is closing in on them.
I wasn't crazy about Liotta in it though. There was something a little strained about his performance.
Also love Casino. Sharon Stone was awesome. Casino is no Goodfellas but it's still very good.
This is one of my top 3 movies, love it. Flawless and hugely entertaining. And I don't think it falls apart in the second half - the scene where Henry is totally coked out, picks up his brother, makes dinner, dumps guns with Karen, gives the babysitter drugs to take to Pittsburgh and sees a helicopter following him all day is friggin amazing. "All day long, the poor guy's been watching helicopters and tomato sauce."
It seems people here agree that Joe Pecsi deserved to BEAT Bruce Davison for the Oscar.
Whenna u gonna find urself a nice girl..... settle down.....
I've lost track of how many times I've seen Goodfellas and I still tense up at that Joe Pesci scene when he asks Ray Liotta, "Funny? How am I funny?".
Look at henry...found a nice girl... getting married.....gonna settle down...start a family....
Isiah Whitlock, Jr. also had a small part in [italic]Goodfellas[/italic] as the doctor at the hospital who gives Henry some Valium during the cocaine/helicopter sequence. He played State Senator Clay Davis (shiiiiiiit!) in [italic]the Wire[/italic].
Lorraine Bracco portrayed Lorraine Bracco as a mob wife. In the Sopranos, Lorraine Bracco plays Lorraine Bracco as a shrink.
She may play different characters, but she's always Lorraine Bracco.
And she's a fucking whack job. Dealt with her at my place of work in the 90s.
The ultimate example that the Oscars have no meaning. I say that because it wasn't just one actor beating another, but a series of willfully blind decisions that year.
IMO Goodfellas should have won Picture, Director, Screenplay, Editing, Cinematography, Sup Actor, Art Direction and Costumes. The last two might seem weird but those sets and costumes look 100% authentic and its just a crock that Downton Abbey-type movies always win in those categories. It is also a good argument for including an Oscar for casting, as each role in the film is perfectly cast.
Unlike some people, I do think Dances With Wolves is a really good movie and Costner did an excellent job, but he won because it was a message movie and he was a hot commodity at the time. One of the most across-the-board bad years in Oscar history.
Lois the drug runner was played by none other than Frances McDormand, the pregnant sheriff in "Fargo"(who's married to one of the Coen brothers).
Lois was played by an actress named Welker White, R54.
A lot of stuff in the corporate pavilions had been at the New York World's Fair
"Lorraine Bracco portrayed Lorraine Bracco as a mob wife. In the Sopranos, Lorraine Bracco plays Lorraine Bracco as a shrink.
She may play different characters, but she's always Lorraine Bracco."
I don't know about Lorraine Bracco, but that's definitely true of the loathsome Whoopi Goldberg, who plays Whoopi Goldberg in everything she does. Her winning an Oscar for her turn as Whoopi Goldberg in "Ghost" was a fucking travesty.
Lorraine wasted exit as Karen hill, so? Who gives a shirt how she was in other roles?
I wish Scorsese would get back to making movies like Goodfellas and Casino but for years now he's been too preoccupied with the overrated Leonardo Dicaprio.
I love this movie, it's basically perfect and so funny. Shockingly funny for a seriously violent gangster movie. Martin Scorsese was a master filmmaker at the top of his game. "Dances With Wolves" was a good movie but nowhere near the brilliance of "Goodfellas". Scorsese was robbed.
One of my all-time favorites: The scene at Tommy DeVito's mother's house with Scorsese's mother playing Mrs. DeVito.
(The first 13 seconds are pixelated, then it clears as they drive up to Mrs. DeVito's.)
[quote]I wish Scorsese would get back to making movies like Goodfellas and Casino
I'd certainly argue that THE DEPARTED was in this vein. Not as good as GOODFELLAS, perhaps, but better than CASINO.
I prefer Married to the Mob.
Its provocative to say but I would argue that a movie like Goodfellas could not get made today.
Nora Ephron's mother-in-law made the painting of the two dogs in the boat with the old man that boat that looks like Mutt.
R64 Not just Good Fellas. A lot of great movies from the past could never get funded today. It's either big budget spectacles or small budget indies, not many much in between.
I love this movie. I read the book years ago before it was ever thought of as a movie.Great cast, and this is the movie where I came to really appreciate Scorcese's use of music. The music they chose for this movie was perfect.
She's no angel...
Slicing the garlic with a razor blade ...
This is too much praise for DataLounge`s good...
How does "A Bronx Tale" rate as a mob movie?
You ruined my fucking lunch.
Does anyone else get the feeling one person wrote a lot of this thread? So many of the posts have the same tone.
Great film. Not better than The Godfather.
Goodfellas and Godfather are two different sorts of films. You can't compare them.
Godfather is a piece of classical music - a masterpiece.
While Goodfellas is a masterpiece of dirty, dirty jazz.
[quote] Godfather is a piece of classical music - a masterpiece. While Goodfellas is a masterpiece of dirty, dirty jazz.
This is one of the more pretentious things I have seen here in a long, long time.
How so, r74?
I actually hate it when Tommy gets killed.
I also hate it when Pesci's character gets it in Casino.
If Goodfellas were made today, you just know Scorsese would put Dicaprio in the Ray Liotta part and the whole damn movie would have been ruined.
If there is any flaw in this movie at all, it's that some of the actors look too old for their parts, especially DeNiro and Pesci.
Webmaster, I want you to know you have a whore living in R74. Janice ROSSI!
I'm ashamed to admit I'm one of the 5 or 6 people on this planet who never saw Goodfellas. So I was wondering, how does it compare to the other Scorsese/Pesci collaboration, Casino (which I have seen)? Is it better? Did Joe Pesci steal the movie in Goodfellas, too?
Goodfellas is vastly superior to Casino, r80.
I met both of Scorcese's parents and his mother was exactly as she appeared in the movie. She no doubt ad libbed the whole thing. His father was tremendously proud of Martin and told me how Martin bought them a place in Gramercy Park and how he never expected to live in such a place after being on Elizabeth Street for most of his life.
I love this picture. I watch it at least once a year. There is not one inch of that film, not one second, that is superfluous. Every single second of it is perfect. There are so many great lines, great characters, great sets, costumes and great shots. Obviously the Copacabana tracking shot should take its place next to the Odessa Steps Scene in any film class. For me though, the scene near the end, when after meeting Jimmy for the last time and he invites Karen to check out some dresses in another part of the building. As she walks down the street she gets the feeling something is wrong. The tension in that shot is so intense, after seeing it countless times, it still unnerves me.
A friend used to work for Scorcese organizing his vast movie collection. He was a featured extra on the movie; he's the waiter who gets abused by Joe Pesce before he goes into his whole "do I amuse you" soliloquy. Although his acting career went nowhere he is very proud of the fact that he has a small amount of film real estate in what he feels is the best movie ever made. He also says that Marty was very good to him and treated him like family.
Whenever I heard that oldies Ronnettes' song, Then He Kissed Me" I see that scene of them walking into the nightclub.
I really prefer Casino over this. And "Donnie Brasco" with Depp is better.
Casino is great though - sure it drags in parts, but Sharon Stone was incredible. And James Woods plays the creepy guy so perfectly
Great thread, and so many scenes spring instantly to mind. The queasiness of the scene where Liotta knows Jimmy is sending him to be whacked is of course underlined by the camera movements outside the cafe window; but also by the magnified lenses in De Niro's glasses. His earnestness seems so transparently unreliable.
Just like indeed when he's directing Karen outside the warehouse, to go further and further, and groups of men in alleyways silently stare at her.
Unnerving for me though when Pesci rises to the 'shoeshine' bait in the bar, and characteristically goes nuts. The violence is so relished and repetitive it's funny, cartoonlike - they all welcome the chance to liven up a dull afternoon with a murder spree. Scorsese (dangerously) makes you feel the 'fun.'
I think you're off on that last part R87.
Gays like casino just because of stones diva performance and outfits. It is not as good.
What about Bruce Davison being robbed for the Oscar!
GOODFELLAS is Scorsese's best film. Nothing else he did is as good, especially nothing he did after it.
[quote]James Woods plays the creepy guy so perfectly
Acting! (And nothing else.)
One of my favorite movies, I was obsessed with this movie on VHS as a gay 12 year old.
I thought Ray Liotta was hot, especially in the shower scene.
Best gangster movie EVER.
And Lorraine Bracco was robbed!
A real masterpiece. I'm always happy when they get the mob at the end. The movie captures how horrible they all are (even if very entertaining). Every scene is perfect.
Some of the best gossip I heard on DL came from a first-hand source of Ray Liotta fucking Frank Langella during a Broadway play they were in.
R96 bullshit! Both are straight. Most men are straight.
Let's not turn this into a DL every guy is gay in Hollywood threads.
Now let's get back to Goodfellas.
When James Woods heard Scorsese was interested in casting him, he called an left a message: Any part, any movie, any time, any place.
You don't see it much, but Joe Pesci's car (a Chevy Impala) was one of the great movie cars of all time:
Love this thread. This movie always comes to mind when I think about "best movies ever". Perfect movie in every way.
Please stop feeding the dog from the table from the plate on top of it! Stop it!
I remember I was buying a bunch of things and I picked up the soundtrack to goodfellas. When I got home, it didn't have any of the songs from the movie that I wanted to hear.
I have "Jump into the Fire" on my iPhone and whenever I'm in my car and it plays, I look up into the sky for a helicopter, just for fun.
From the Frank Langella thread:
[quote]Frank and Ray did a play together a few years back on Broadway called MATCH. It wasn't a good play and didn't run very long at all.
[quote]Ray was at a low point in his life (getting a divorce) and career when he agreed to do the play and had little to no stage experience - Frank took Ray "in hand" (as he liked to say) and "taught him how to act for the stage" - there were long private "coaching sessions" in Ray's hotel room, Frank's apartment, and various dressing rooms at the Plymouth Theater. In rehearsals, Ray would defer to Frank rather than to the director, Nicky Martin.
[quote]The play opened to bad reviews (even for Frank) and Ray got only OK notices. But it was late in the season, so there was lots of pre-Tony publicity events, which Frank and Ray always attended together. The show got only one Tony nomination (for Frank) and closed before the awards were even handed out. Ray's "comeback" was a failure - he sort of blamed Frank for using him and left quite bitterly. Frank, OTOH, got a Tony nomination and bragged to his friends about bagging a "Goodfella with the bluest eyes you ever saw and a good cock to match."
[quote]End of story.
R104 Frank Langella is straight and Ray Liotta is straight.
They have both been married multiple times, not that that means anything as I know plenty of married closet cases, but those two are not.
A guy isn't gonna wake up one day after worshipping pussy for years and decide he wants some dick,that's not how it works.
Guys can be bi, but these 2 are definitely 100% straight.
The thing I loved about it too was that all the integral but lesser known crafts like score and editing were absolutely brilliant.
The editing especially in the coke scene was great; it wasn't showy like the baptism scene in The Godfather.
Paul Sorvino steals every scene he's in. You can't take your eyes off him, and he projects so much power and authority with almost no lines.
[quote]Paulie may have moved slow, but it was only because Paulie didn't have to move for anybody.
[quote]All they got from Paulie was protection from other guys looking to rip them off. That's what it's all about. That's what the FBI can never understand - that what Paulie and the organization offer is protection for the kinds of guys who can't go to the cops. They're like the police department for wiseguys.
You're using the quote function wrong.
From an article about Henry Hill andy the making of Goodfellas:
In my conversation with Hill he was candid, ebullient, and at times very introspective — delivering each part of his story as if he were unburdening it for the first time.
But he wasn't. He had told these stories hundreds of times. Told them to the FBI, to author Nicholas Pileggi, to filmmaker Martin Scorsese, and to anyone who happened to have the bar stool next to him and took the time to ask. In fact, many of Hill's late-night phone calls to Pileggi would be received by Pileggi's wife, screenwriter/director Nora Ephron, who took these calls and turned them into the 1990 film My Blue Heaven, to which Hill said, "I bothered them so much I thought she earned that, so I didn't sue." And as far as the bar stool talk? Former federal prosecutor Ed McDonald told yarns about how getting star witness Hill to court on time often involved retracing his steps the night before to find out at which bar in New York Hill had left his false teeth.
Joe pesci's character tommy devito was based on a real killer named thomas de simone who was considered a looker and was killed in the 70's by john gotti for killing billy batt in the 60's and he was 29 when he died and his body was never found - joe pesci was cast even though he was much older than the character was in real life
It's on right now.
The use of "Layla" is about the best use of underscoring in an American film
Every song used in the film is perfect.
For quite a few years Henry would call in to the Howard Stern show & tell all, even after leaving the Witness Protection service.
What kind of people are these? He's not Jewish. Did you know how these people live? You don't know where he is. You don't know who he's with. Normal people don't act like this!
Sharon Stone may have been great in Casino, but I was better.