Based off of Nicholas Pileggi’s book, “Wiseguy,” Martin Scorsese’s 1990 film “Goodfellas” follows the life of an average boy, Henry Hill, who dreams of a little more excitement from life, so ends up secretly joining a gang and doing their dirty work until he is able to earn their trust and move up in ranking. It is quite impressive how many years he was able to keep up the act of participating in the mob activities without getting caught while also living a double life as an average family man. He successfully found and married a woman who was willing to stick with him even after she found out what he really does for a living and had kids with her. It was also pretty impressive how he managed to stay on everyone’s good side for so long and not get killed by any of the members.
One thing that struck me is that no matter what happened, somehow Hill was able to get away with a lot of things from robbing places, to injuring/killing people, and even cheating on his wife. It’s like this man was invincible. No one could touch him and somehow he always managed to ween his way out of trouble before anything serious could happen. But those are some of the privileges that come with being a part of the group that he was involved with.
Even though Hill was just as bad as the rest of them you can’t help but feel like there is still a good guy with a good heart deep down inside of him that it sometimes trying to scratch his way out and claim his presence. I feel that this shows every time Tommy either injures or kills someone. Hill always tries to step in and do whatever he can to prevent it from happening or at least prolong it, and every time an innocent person is hurt, he always steps in to help the person. Sure, he has made some bad decisions with the influence of this gang but I’m sure there is still the average Henry Hill from the beginning of the film still inside of him.
As far as the cinematography goes, there was one scene in particular where the camera goes through a bar and shows all of the members of the gang as the main character narrates the scene, describing who each person is. This was a really creative technique to use and I also thought it was funny how some of the guys acknowledge the fact that there was a camera on them, almost breaking that fourth wall. Then in a scene towards the end of the film when Hill actually did break the fourth wall in the court room scene. I was confused at first because it took me a while to realize that he was actually talking to the camera and not an actual person. But after I realized that he was addressing the audience I thought it was a really interesting and slightly humorous touch to the film.