A Ganster/Mafia Flim Discussuion Thread

Discussion in 'Archive: The Amphitheatre' started by ILLUMINATUS_JEDI, Aug 17, 2002.

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  1. ILLUMINATUS_JEDI Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 29, 2001
    star 4
    I was thinking every week we could talk about a different flim in this genre.

    Some of the best loved and classic flims in cinematic history fall into this genre.

    "Epic" gangster/Mafia flims are few and far betweem but there's a rush of them at the moment (Road to Perdition, Gangs of New York and more)

    Seeming The Godfather is already being discussed I think we should talk about Goodfellas this week.

    So let's begin :)

    What is it about the flim you like?
    Did you enjoy it? Better than G?
    Any parts of the flim that stood out?
    Do you prefer one of Scrosses (sp?) other Gangster flims?
  2. Mastadge Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 1999
    star 7
    Miller's Crossing
    Bonnie and Clyde
  3. SCOTSSITHLORD Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2002
    star 2
    My favourite Scorsese gangster movie is Casino, a great cast and a great director, combining to produce a great movie. Being somewhat squeamish, there are a few scenes, notably Pesci's brutal method of extracting a confession from a rival gangster, and Pesci and his brother's bloody demise, which make very uncomfortable viewing, but despite my tendency to avert my eyes at those scenes, the film's definitely a classic.
    Sharon Stone is excellent as the dysfunctional gangster's moll, Joe Pesci plays what he's best at, psychotic gangsters, and De Niro's on top form as the accountant come racketeer.
    I'll also take this opportunity to plug one of my all time favourite gangster movies, The Long Good Friday, a Brit flick, originally conceived as a made for tv movie, which was a surprise underground hit.
    Obviously influenced by the mythology of the Kray twins, it's the story of a vicious gangster, Harold Shand, and his downfall just at the moment he's plotting a major alliance with the mafia.
    It's very well acted, Bob Hoskins is excellent as the would be godfather of London, and there's an early cameo appearance by James Bond, aka Pierce Brosnan as an IRA hitman. I would highly recommend it.
  4. neimoidian_85 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 1999
    star 4
    Mafia/Gangster films really sicken me. Most of the time. They are only popular because most people seem to just looooove the Mafia and organized crime in general. So, some cutsie directors makes a VERY trumped up version of the Mafia, and TAHDAH! Low and behold, WE HAVE THE BEST PORTRAIT OF THE MAFIA EVER CREATED! Huh? Who knows how the Mafia REALLY is?

    Okay, I'll admit I like The Godfather. A lot. It has its violence. But not overly bloody and gruesome.

    What really bothers me is overuse of cuss words. AND NO CUSS WORDS DON'T OFFEND ME! Just when you watch certain movies (Reservoir Dogs comes to mind) it seems the only word in the script was f***.

    Reservoir Dogs in my opinion is a sad excuse for a film. WOW! Everyone dies, there's swearing, gore.....what more could a brainless teen need! More misconception of the criminal underworld!

  5. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    I do see neimodian's point about one thing, at least and that's the language. GoodFellas is to me the prime example of this. There's something like 294 uses of the F word in this film and that's, excuse me, totally ludicrous. I refuse to believe that anyone curses like that. I'm sorry.

    However, I will disagree with what neimodian said about no one really knowing how the Mafia is. I suppose you are unaware then that GoodFellas is based on the book Wiseguy (which by the way had only about twenty uses of the F word) written by Nicholas Pileggi following interviews with Henry Hill, who had been the in the Mob for several decades.

    Hill, by the way, is still alive and in hiding, due to the fact that his old friends are still a tad ticked off at him for testifying against them. :p

    One thing I can't stand is when people criticize films about crime as glorifying crime. I'm not sure what's supposed to make us want to be like these guys exactly? The fact that they all die violent deaths? The fact that they lose all the most important things in their lives? The fact that they're neurotic head cases? Crime films do not glorify crime and I will argue that to my dying day, thanks. :p

    In answer to the original question, GoodFellas was quite compelling, though it wasn't nearly as good as the Godfather. It wasn't even Scorsese's best. (That's a toss up between Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, if you're interested).

    Pesci gave a bravura performance (though it is slightly upstaged by his even better one in Raging Bull) and I'm completely disgusted that Ray Liotta did not win Best Actor that year, for giving what is unarguably the best performance he has ever given, before or since. Lorraine Bracco was equally as good and De Niro is always entertaining.

    The direction is inspired and the acting is first rate. It moves in fits and starts, however, so the really good sequences (the killing of Billy Batts, the killing of De Vito, etc) are seperated by some excessive stuff, in my opinion. It's a great film, but it's not on a level with a lot of other gangster films.

    Trivia about GoodFellas:

    Ranked at number #94 on the AFI's list of the 100 best films ever made.

    Took one Oscar: Best Supporting Actor for Joe Pesci.

    Great topic, by the by. I'll be in here a lot. :D
  6. neimoidian_85 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 30, 1999
    star 4
    I've never seen GoodFellas so I can't judge it really.
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