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Isn’t Joe Pesci the most crazy mobster you have ever met? And Ray Liotta the most naïve? And his wife the most corrupt? And Christopher Moltisanti the most… no, wrong film, but there are so many astounding moments where the life of the wise guys in Goodfellas and the happy family of the Sopranos seem like two segments of the same world, with the same habits and rituals and values and delusions and ill choices that “The Sopranoes” could have been called “Goodfellas TV” without doing anybody injustice.

I had not seen the films in many years, and the first thing that I realized I had forgotten is that the main narrator Henry actually makes it pretty high up in the Mafia ranks, but being Irish stays an outsider all the same.  He romaticises his life, but he also conveys what is so great about this family system – being part of a warm-hearted machinery that protects you and catches you if anything happens. Unless you become a liability, which will lead to immediate termination of the relationship and everything else. This cozy family atmosphere makes a lot of the beauty of Goodfellas, especially contrasted to the sometimes ghastly everyday business of producing and getting rid of human bodies, coercing business partners into fulfilling their contractual obligations or just finishing off people who apply the wrong kind of humour at the wrong time. I have to admit that there were a couple of minutes towards the end where I was checking the clock to see how long it would go, it is not woven as tightly as I remember, and certain stylistic elements (like the use of pop music on the soundtrack or the freezing of frames) are slightly overdone. Still a classic that will probably never cease to be fascinating and gripping.

http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/1032176-goodfellas/

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