By Matthew Turner (Erdington, Birmingham)
“Funny how? What the fuck is so funny about me?” Oh, Joe Pesci one of the most underrated actors in my opinion. Yes, he has had a few memorable roles after this movie, but Harry from Home Alone or even his performance in Casino which followed this was a tamer laid back version of Tommy DeVito in Goodfellas, and I do hold a soft spot for his early movie My Cousin Vinny (hilarious movie, really).
OK, I’ve pretty much told you my favorite thing about this movie which is Joe Pesci, the rest of the movie is still quality film making. Ray Liotta as Henry Hill , mob member turned whistleblower was a good performance but I can’t help feeling if this was made years earlier Steve McQueen would have been an exceptional Henry Hill. Robert De Niro’s turn as “Jimmy The Gent” Conway was a revelation, he was charm, wit and manipulation all wrapped up in a smile when he was happy, but cross the man and watch out. Paul Sorvino supporting was also good. The word “fuck” was used 296 times and its used so smoothly so fiercely and so simply it’s just another normal word like it is in reality but it sounds somewhat sexy from our wise guys, if I say so myself.
I have to say if sources are correct, Al Pacino lives with regret because he was reportedly offered the role of Jimmy Conway but refused as he didn’t want to be typecast. It occurred to me though that Dick Tracy was released roughly around the time of Goodfellas and Pacino played Big Boy Caprice in a rather comical gangster. However I couldn’t see past De Niro anyway, who arguably provided the performance of his career here, although his role in The Adventures of Rocky & Bullwinkle runs close!!
This movie is over 20 years old and is still adored by the generation of past and present, the violence, the glamour the unforgettable line of “As far back as I can remember I always wanted to be a gangster.” You can relive this movie time and time again and still take something different from it. Talk of remake has been bouncing around for a while, but in the words of Darth Vader at the end of Revenge of the Sith …nooooooooooo!View Movie Quotes