Goodfellas

GoodfellasBBBBB

(out of 5)

Martin Scorsese’s greatest achievement in the gangster-themed movies. Featuring exceptional performances and a brilliant script co-written by Scorsese and Nicholas Pileggi, author of the original novel Wise Guys that the screenplay is based on, it follows three New York City hoods through their lives in the crime racket. Ray Liotta is the main protagonist of the film, the narrator through whose eyes everything is viewed as he and his pals Joe Pesci and Robert De Niro climb their way through the hierarchies of the mob in order to make it to the top. When things start getting tough for Liotta in his personal life, he begins to reevaluate his experience and wonder if maybe he doesn’t want to get out. Doing so would be dangerous for his friends, leaving him hanging between a rock and a hard place. Lorraine Bracco is terrific as Liotta’s boisterous wife, but the show is completely stolen by Pesci’s madly energetic, terrifying performance as the loose cannon in the group; he would play a similar role again in Casino but it wouldn’t be as fresh the second time around.

USA, 1990

Directed by Martin Scorsese

Screenplay by Nicholas Pileggi, Martin Scorsese, based on the novel Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi

Cinematography by Michael Ballhaus

Film Festivals:  Venice 1990

Academy Award
Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Joe Pesci as “Tommy DeVito”)

Nominations
Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Lorraine Bracco as “Karen Hill”)
Best Directing (Martin Scorsese)
Best Film Editing (Thelma Schoonmaker)
Best Picture (Irwin Winkler, producer)
Best Writing (Screenplay Based on Material From Another Medium) (Nicholas Pileggi, Martin Scorsese)

Golden Globe Award Nominations
Best Motion Picture-Drama
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture (Lorraine Bracco)
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture (Joe Pesci)
Best Director (Martin Scorsese)
Best Screenplay (Nicholas Pileggi, Martin Scorsese)

New York Film Critics Awards
Best Film
Best Actor (Robert De Niro)
Best Director (Martin Scorsese)

Nominations
Best Supporting Actor (Joe Pesci)
Best Supporting Actress (Lorraine Bracco)
Best Cinematographer (Michael Ballhaus)

Los Angeles Film Critics Awards
Best Picture
Best Supporting Actor (Joe Pesci)
Best Supporting Actress (Lorraine Bracco)
Best Director (Martin Scorsese)
Best Cinematography (Michael Ballhaus)

National Society of Film Critics Awards
Best Film
Best Director (Martin Scorsese)

Nominations
Best Actor (Robert De Niro)
Best Supporting Actor (Joe Pesci)

National Board Of Review Awards
Best Supporting Actor (Joe Pesci)
Top Ten Films

Venice Film Festival Award
Best Director (Martin Scorsese)

Writers Guild Award Nomination
Best Adapted Screenplay

Directors Guild Award Nomination
Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures (Martin Scorsese)

British Academy Awards
Best Film
Best Direction (Martin Scorsese)
Best Screenplay – Adapted
Best Costume Design
Best Editing

Nominations
Best Actor (Robert De Niro)
Best Cinematography

Cesar Award Nomination
Best Foreign Film

Boston Film Critics Awards
Best Film
Best Supporting Actor (Joe Pesci)
Best Director (Martin Scorsese)

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