Goodfellas  (1990)

IMDB Rating 8.7/10  146 min - Rated 18 Crime | Drama

Stars:            Robert De Niro,  Joe Pesci,  Ray Liotta  Director:      Martin Scorcese

Goodfellas is based on the true story of one man's lifein the New York Mafia. Liotta plays henry Hill the central character of the film, with De Niro and Pesci making up th eother 'Goodfellas'. As Henry Hill grows up, he progresses from running errands for the local mafia to become a fully-fledged member of the gang. Henry is half Italian, half-Irish and as such will never be accepted into the higher echelons of the Mafia as a 'name'. This, however does not prevent him from living the good life; status, cars, cash and mistresses are all to be enjoyed. The focus is firmly on the camaraderie however, and the Goodfellas are rarely apart — family parties, gambling and carousing are as much a part of this life as the violence, extortion and robbery.  The story really gets interesting when the bonds and loyalty that tie the Goodfellas together start to unravel.  From the director that made such classics as Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, it is high praise to rate Goodfellas as one of Scorsese's finest films, but it is completely justified. Scorsese provides an insight into the mob but without losing the audience's sympathy with, and interest in, the characters. Add to that some outstanding performances from actors such as De Niro, Liotta and especially Pesci, and you have a brilliant movie.  As with many Mafia films there is a fair amount of violence, however, more worthy of note is the tension which Scorsese builds and it is the threat of impending violence that makes this movie stand out. This film also has humour; I challenge anyone watching the 'You think I'm funny?' scene not to feel the hairs stand up on the back of their neck before laughing out loud in relief. And if that's not enough, there are a couple of great recipes — just remember to slice your garlic with a razor blade.