Martin Scorsese's 1990 masterpiece GoodFellas immortalizes the hilarious, horrifying life of actual gangster Henry Hill (Ray Liotta), from his teen years on the streets of New York to his anonymous exile under the Witness Protection Program. The director's kinetic style is perfect for recounting Hill's ruthless rise to power in the 1950s as well as his drugged-out fall in the late 1970s. “Goodfellas” starred Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci and Ray Liotta and was based on the 1985 nonfiction book “Wiseguy” by crime reporter Nicholas Pileggi, who collaborated with Scorsese on the film.
Director Martin Scorsese's masterpiece is a symphony of memorable quotes, colorful characters, and hard-won advice. You don't have to approve of the disruptive entrepreneurs' industry to read the movie as a Stoic manifesto. The wise guys of Goodfellas stage a series of teachable moments in their successes, failures, outbursts, and acts of generosity. “You can watch it anytime and take away something different.”
The movie also got a book version - Good Advice from ‘Goodfellas' by D.X. Ferris
This movie will teach you how to make yourself indispensable; the folly of multitasking; the value of stoicism; optics; strategic thinking; goal-setting and customer service.
“In this day and age, we all know what we have to do but I think we’re losing sight of what we should do,” drawing a parallel between lessons gleaned from the movie and applying them to real-life.
“This movie demonstrates different ways to be a better parent, a better employee or a better teammate,” he added. “Things that will make people want to deal with you more often. It’s a buyer’s market out there. Why should people choose you?”
1. Be funny. But not too funny.
2. Results come with execution only!
Henry Hill said at the beginning of the movie: “For us to live any other way was nuts”, “If we wanted something, we just took it.” And for us this is one of the most important lessons: you just have to get out there and take what is yours.
If you spend too much time planning, strategizing, debating trivial details and not executing your competitors will bury you in no time.
I am not saying you should skip this stage altogether but don’t get stuck overthinking for too long.
3. Don’t live for appearances
4. Make you clients feel like they are part of something big
5. Have a sense of humor
6. Snitches Get Stitches, Never rat on your friends, and always keep your mouth shut.
7. Only the Strong Survive
8. A Deal with the Devil
9. Act Like You Own the Place
10. Keep Your Friends Close.
D.X Ferris, author of the book, says he spent part of last summer studying corporate culture. One organization Ferris worked with staged what he terms “a very public show” about making a decision that was designed to save everyone six dollars while simultaneously inconveniencing a lot of folks.
“The kind of organization that will look at a couple of dozen employees and say, ‘You are literally not worth an extra dime to us,’” he said. “At night, ‘Goodfellas’ was in rotation on cable. You’d see them staging heists and robberies and they would share the money. If you bring a big account to Jimmy Conway (played by De Niro) he will share the money with you.”
Martin Scorsese is a guy who studied for a while to be a priest,” he said. “ When he puts things out there that some might perceive as negative, I think there’s a larger moral lesson we can draw from.
I think the most powerful takeaway from the movie is that you can be successful but be smart about it. Don’t be selfish and pay attention to what you’re doing.”
Hope you enjoyed reading it!