Goodfellas on Top

Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas is the greatest movie of all time, according to a poll in Total Film magazine. It beat perennial favourites Citizen Kane and Star Wars to secure the number one spot in the list compiled by industry experts.

The 1990 film based on the life of gangster Henry Hill became notorious for its explicit language and excessive violence. A Total Film spokesman said: "Choosing the final 100 provoked endless rows and debates but we think we've put together the definitive list." He added: "Goodfellas has it all - story, dialogue, performances, technique."

But Nicola Hay, the programmer of the Edinburgh Film Guild, snubbed the final selection: "As to whether Goodfellas is the best film ever made, I personally don't think so. Some of the others in the top ten definitely aren't that fantastic, such as The Empire Strikes Back and The Lord Of The Rings trilogy."

Notable absences from the magazine’s list include The Shawshank Redemption and Casablanca, which scraped in at 98. Peter Jackson enthusiasts will be pleased to find his Lord of the Rings trilogy at number 9. The epic films are three of the most successful ever made with the final instalment, Return of the King, grossing more than $1billion worldwide.

Joe Pesci won an Oscar for his supporting role as Tommy DeVito in Goodfellas, but when he showed the film to his mother, she asked him if he really had to swear so much. Veteran director Scorsese has been nominated for a mammoth seven Oscars, but has so far missed out on the prestigious award. His most recent work, The Aviator, played out typically at the 2005 Academy Awards, winning in several categories but again failing to recognise the director’s name.

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