Goodfellas - Content Analysis

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Goodfellas – Club Scene content analysis

Camera and Editing

The scene starts with a close up of two character’s hands exchanging a set of car keys. Then the camera zooms out into a very brief establishing mid shot, showing three characters: two men and a woman. The main character, Henry Hill joins the woman, and the camera starts to track them from behind. They go down into the club’s basement, skipping the queue and walk through, what appears to be, a complicated kind of maze through the club’s kitchen and hallways.
Already we can get a sense that the main character has something dark, mysterious and very underground about him. This is because he somehow has the power over these people
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This is maybe to create the effect of a much calmer atmosphere. Though the club is still full of people and noise, in my opinion it is no way near as dramatic as the kitchen. At this point, Henry and is date are welcomed by another very powerful man. This man orders a table ‘down in front’ for the couple and then the camera pans left to show a waiter carrying this table. Though the camera is now not focusing on Henry and this other man, we still hear their voices loud and clear as if they were up close to the camera. This maybe makes the audience keep their attention on Henry because as we can still hear his voice, we know that he will be back on the camera once again soon. When the table is placed down at the front pretty close to the stage, Henry and his girl take their seats. Once they are settled, the girl asks ‘What exactly do you do?’ and he replies, ‘I’m in construction.’ We know quite well that Henry is not in construction, as people would not care to treat an ordinary builder like some royalty in a club. This tops off how effective this scene is. The audience has not been told directly what Henry does for a living, but what they do know, it must be something quite secretive, dark, dangerous and underground.


There were lots of characters and objects in this one shot scene and I think it made it easier for the director in some cases. This is because if there were any cuts, then the mise-en scene would
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