Classic Movies

Good Fellas (1990)

An American, 2 hour & 28 minute R rated crime/ drama film (mob movie) based on a 1986 non-fiction book named “Wiseguy,” by New York crime reporter, Nicholas Pileggi, who also co-wrote the screenplay along with its director, Martin Scorsese and was produced by Irwin Winkler. Released on September 19, 1990, the film narrates the rise and fall of a mob associate and his friends over a period of time from 1955 to 1980. The films storyline was based on a young man who grew up in the mob and worked very hard to advance himself through the ranks. He enjoys his life of money and luxury, but is oblivious to the horror that he causes. A drug addiction and a few mistakes ultimately unravel his climb to the top.

To prepare for their roles, starring cast members often spoke with Pileggi, who shared research material left over from writing the book. According to Pesci, improvisation and ad-libbing came out of rehearsals wherein Scorsese gave the actors freedom to do whatever they wanted. The director made transcripts of these sessions, took the lines he liked best, and put them into a revised script the cast worked from during principal photography.

Goodfellas grossed a whopping $46.8 million on a $25 million budget, receiving positive reviews from critics and was nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, winning for starring actor, Joe Pesci, the Best Actor in a Supporting Role category. Scorsese’s film won five awards from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts including Best Film, and Best Director naming it the Best Film of the year by various film critics groups, and is still till this day often regarded as one of the greatest films of all time.

Starring:

Robert Di Niro as James “Jimmy the Gent” Conway

Ray Liotta as Henry Hill

Joe Pesci as Tommy DeVito

Lorraine Bracco as Karen Hill

Paul Sorvino as Paul “Paulie” Cicero

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