My Favourite Things is a precursor to TC’s Treasures. Starting in November 2016, all My Favourite Things posts will be known as TC’s Treasures.
It’s the first Tuesday of a new month, and it’s time to do Raisa and Eirene’s wonderful link-up, My Favourite Things. Two weeks ago, I developed this sudden urge to finally watch some mob movies that have been sitting in front of my TV for months. I’ve always been into mob films, so my boss and I did a movie exchange, but I’d just not been able to watch them yet because of lack of time and not being in the right mood. Well, I finally got in the mood, and I watched The Untouchables, Casino, and a little bit of Scarface with Al Pacino. Having watch those, I watched all the mob movies on my to-watch list with the exception of one, so this month’s favourites will showcase the gangster films I love.
Once Upon a Time in America
I absolutely adore Once Upon a Time in America. This, to me, is the epic of all gangster films. This is actually the first “mainstream” gangster film I saw, and I’m really glad I watched the uber long director’s cut version instead of the craptastic shortened version they released in theatres. This movie has it all — childhood friendship being torn apart by adulthood, the raw drama and love between the characters, the 1920s setting which is my absolute favourite era, and one of the most heart-wrenching, beautiful film soundtracks by Ennio Morricone. Not to mention the brilliant cast consisting of Robert De Niro and James Woods. Then there’s the super ambiguous ending that still puzzles me, but it also fascinates me. This film is meant to be Sergio Leone’s magnum opus, but unfortunately it was panned by the critic when the shortened version came out in theatres. The horrible reviews broke Leone’s heart, and I’m just sorry he’s not alive to see just how much of a masterpiece this film is considered today.
I just recently saw The Untouchables, and all I can say is this: why did it take me so long to watch this?! While nothing can take away Once Upon a Time in America’s top spot, this one almost came close. Finally, I watch a film where I like Kevin Costner! And Sean Connery? Oh, my goodness. Just, wow. I was amazed and impressed by those two, along with Andy Garcia and Charles Martin Smith. Also, Robert De Niro as Al bloody Capone? Guhhhh. I was, almost, a pile of goo after watching this film about these group of men trying to bring down Al Capone. It has a perfect mix of action and drama, and once again that soundtrack by Ennio Morricone?! I can’t stop listening to its main theme. I am so glad my boss had this!
The Godfather trilogy and I had a long history. See, I bought the DVD set, but it took me several years before I finally got around to watching them. And when I did? I was so hooked on the fictional world of the Corleone family. I was really surprised by how much I enjoyed this film. Al Pacino as Michael Corleone is completely riveting to the point that I developed a mad crush on young Al Pacino. And then there’s Marlon Brando as Vito Corleone, and I was moved by his presence and performance. It was so gory, but so realistically portrayed.
The Godfather Part II
Then there’s The Godfather Part II. I have to say I do prefer the first one, but this was a very strong sequel. I particularly enjoyed how they took Vito’s and Michael’s story and had them parallel each other. The contrast between them and how they came to be mob rulers are really compelling. Robert De Niro as young Vito Corleone was brilliant. And while Michael Corleone’s considered a villain in this film, I feel that he’s a tragic hero instead.
Goodfellas is a film I’d only seen once so far, but it made enough of an impact on me to put this on my top gangster films list. Honestly, I think the main reason why I loved this film so much is because of Joe Pesci. He’s. Fucking. Amazing. He was also fantastic in Casino, but I feel that Goodfellas is a much stronger film overall. Joe Pesci made the movie for me, and I can so see why he won best supporting actor for his work in this film.
Welp, those are my top gangster films. I’m still hoping to watch the 1930s Scarface one of these days and hope I can stomach that more than the 1980s Scarface with Al Pacino. Long story short — I couldn’t stand Tony Montana, so after 20 minutes, I ended up cutting that one off. Anyway, that aside what are your favourite gangster films if you’re into them? Let me know in the comments, dear readers! ^^