Goodfellas

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Released 1990

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9.6
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Movie Summary

Director:
Martin Scorsese
Released:
1990
Rating:
R

Goodfellas, released in 1990, is regarded by many as Martin Scorsese's best picture, and often considered one of the greatest films in cinematic history. Based on the book "Wiseguy" by Nicholas Pileggi, the film follows the rise and fall of three gangsters, spanning a time period of over three decades. The movie opens with a young Henry Hill, a Brooklyn kid with both an Irish and Italian background and dreams of one day becoming a gangster like the wiseguys that line his neighborhood. To the horror of his family, Henry's dream begins to come true when he is offered a chance to work for the local gangsters doing things such as running errands, making sandwiches, and even holding their umbrellas. As time passes, Henry becomes a full-fledged member of his adopted crime family and begins to work closely with rusted friends Jimmy Conway and Tommy DeVito. As the bosses and the businesses change with the times, the crew experiences new highs in the organized crime world, but as with all highs, there's always a fall back down to Earth. Nominated for six Academy Awards, Goodfellas is a non-stop thrill from beginning to end, a pillar of American cinema, and an absolute must-see movie.

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Metacritic Score

  • 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Roger Ebert

    No finer film has ever been made about organized crime - not even "The Godfather."

  • 80

    Rolling Stone

    Martin Scorsese scores again with his gritty, kinetic adaptation of Nicolas Pileggi's best-selling "Wiseguy."

  • 70

    Variety

    Simultaneously fascinating and repellent, Goodfellas is Martin Scorsese's colorful but dramatically unsatisfying inside look at Mafia life in 1955-1980 New York City.

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Themes

original gangsters, mob mentality, illegal activities, new jersey mob, high stake situations