Comm 350 Analysis of Goodfellas

Comm 350 Analysis of Goodfellas - Film Analysis of...

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Film Analysis of Scorsese’s Goodfellas By Bonnie McAvoy Com 350: American Cinema Dr. Kim Walker April 21, 2009
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Martin Scorsese reveals his unique talents in his 1990 film Goodfellas. The film is about life in the early 1960’s for three gangsters, Henry Hill (Ray Liotta), Jimmy Conway (Robert De Niro), and Tommy De Vito (Joe Pesci). Scorsese’s goal for this film was to show the realities of the mafia rather than the myths and “glam” that are usually revealed through TV and film. Nicolas Pileggi helped that reality by allowing Scorsese to base the movie off his non-fictional book, Wise Guys . Pileggi also helped co-write the screenplay with Scorsese. Goodfellas is the first film where Scorsese specifically explains how the innermost responsibilities of the mafia work. His other movies such as After Hours (1985), The Color of Money (1986), and Casino (1995) share the same theme of illustrating the dark side to the American Dream. Goodfellas can be considered a docudrama because it is based off of a book, which is a piece of documentary journalism. Scorsese shows much passion in re-creating the truth of ethnic concerns and situations because he comes from the Italian/American background and he wants his audience to be able to see through his perspective. The stylistic feature that helps Scorsese do this is the free indirect POV shot, originally coined by Pasolini; it is a shot that is both subjective and objective. This kind of shot is said to allow the director to express his vision through the character’s perspective. 1 Scorsese explains that many of his films “were very much inspired by the documentary aspects of Rossellini’s movies- the accuracy of historical details, the social accuracy . . . Goodfellas and Casino were also rooted in this sense of cultural accuracy.” 2 Similar to a documentary, Goodfellas presents factual information such as, what happened to the characters in real life, and actual historic events like the Air France hold up and
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This note was uploaded on 02/28/2011 for the course COMM 203 taught by Professor Stansburry during the Spring '07 term at University of Colorado-Colorado Springs.

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Comm 350 Analysis of Goodfellas - Film Analysis of...

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