What is this fascination of Hollywood with the mafia? I can barely enjoy some of these movies and some of them just make me question what the motivation was to make such a movie! It turns out that Goodfellas, supposedly a classic by Martin Scorsese, belongs to the latter category.
The story is narrated by Ray Liotta as his autobiography. He grows up in a mafia neighbourhood and joins them right from childhood. Over time, he is given more responsibilities, and teams up with Robert de Niro and Joe Pesci. Together they go around extracting money, smuggling in goods and snuffing out people. Their exploits keep getting grander, more gruesome and insane, leading finally to their incarceration. Liotta starts a drug business while in jail and expands it with his friends once he is released. But, his luck runs out and he and his wife are caught by the narcs. He finally gives up information on the entire mafia family to gain his escape through the Witness Protection Program.
This movie feels excruciatingly long and is quite gory. People go around cutting off body parts, and shooting away with aplomb! There is dark humour and some good quotes, neither of which I can enjoy when it involves harming other humans, with no remorse. The movie does portray the running of an Italian crime syndicate in detail. The acting and direction is excellent, but to what end?! If you are the guy who is obsessed with Godfather, you might like Goodfellas, I guess.