Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Sight & Sound Challenge: Goodfellas (1990)

Film: Goodfellas (80/250) 
Critics Poll: 171st 
Directors Poll: 48th 
First Time/Rewatch: Rewatch

I don't go in much for gangster movies. Many of them don't have much going for them beyond testosterone and violence. And while Goodfellas has that in spades, it has something else: STYLE. Along with the Godfather films (okay, the first two), this film transcends its genre and becomes a great film across the board. Martin Scorsese knows what he's doing and rarely disappoints. His use of visuals, of music (Layla Piano Exit, come on!) and the excellent voiceover (matched only by Sunset Boulevard, in my opinion) create a film with richness and depth. And I LOVE that they gave Karen Hill a voiceover too. Too many films like this completely bypass a female perspective. Goodfellas gives you a sense of their world, of a pride and sense of belonging beyond the violence. It may glamorize it a bit, but there's nothing glamorous about a bullet to the head or ending up frozen in a meat truck. Unless it's set to Derek and the Dominos, of course.

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