Movie House Memories

Goodfellas (1990)

Episode #57

Warner Bros released Goodfellas to theaters on September 21, 1990. Martin Scorsese directs the film which stars Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, and Joe Pesci.

Goodfellas Movie Summary

Goodfellas follows the auto-biographical story of Henry Hill, a young boy who grows up in a predominantly Italian-American neighborhood of Brooklyn. The film begins with the adult version of Hill recalling, “As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be a gangster.” Hill, played by Ray Liotta, talks about how as a child he idolized the Lucchese crime family, and ultimately, how he quit school to go work for them. His childhood is spent running errands for wise guys around town, and causing general mayhem at the request of his adopted crime family members.

Eventually, his dedication is noticed and appreciated, and Henry begins to make a decent living for himself. Ultimately, Henry gets arrested while selling stolen merchandise, but he doesn’t give the police any information on where he got the merchandise. Expecting to get into trouble, Henry is surprised when one of his mentors, Jimmy “The Gent” Conway, praises him and tells him that he did great. Jimmy tells him he learned two important lessons, “Never rat on your friends, and always keep your mouth shut.”

The film then jumps forward in time to an adult Henry working for the local mob capo, “Paulie” Cicero. Henry’s crew is made up of Jimmy and Tommy DeVito, a hot headed Italian who is quick to resort to violence, played to perfection by Joe Pesci. Jimmy, Tommy, and Henry work for Paulie primarily hijacking trucks. Jimmy’s crew is even responsible for the famous Air France Robbery that was committed in 1967.

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Warner Bros released Goodfellas to theaters on September 21, 1990. Martin Scorsese directs the film which stars Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, and Joe Pesci.

User Rating: 5 ( 2 votes)
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2 Comments

  1. Just listened to this podcast and enjoyed your discussion on the character study v likability or identifiability (sorry I don’t think that is a real word) of the story and characters. I also am a fan of this long single shot at the Copacabana and thought it was at the time the longest single shot on screen but I maybe wrong there (think it may have been said on Inside the Actors Studio). Cheers Ange

    1. Ange, thanks for the comment. I am glad you liked the podcast. Especially since it was a film that I picked. The Copacabana shot was a great shot. I think the complexity of the shot considering how many moving pieces were in place with all the extras and going in and out of doorways and such puts it up there in the discussion of best single shots on screen. I do, however, also like the opening shot in The Player as well, which was made a couple of years after this film. If for nothing else that they are discussing single shots while actually making one. Thanks for the feedback. I hope you keep following up with us when we are doing something right or wrong. Thanks. Patrick.

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