16 Crime Movies Like Goodfellas

Movies Like Goodfellas

You cannot resist watching gangster movies like Goodfellas because they are fun.

They are interesting and provide you with a glimpse into the criminal underworld. 

They capture your attention in such a way that you want to learn more about the gangsters’ chaotic and carefree lifestyle, which is concealed from the rest of society while they operate openly.

You are already aware of how great gangster movies are if you have seen Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas.

Soon after its premiere, this movie garnered a number of accolades. In terms of its plot and writing, it was compared to the standard gangster movie, The Godfather.

Yet, in addition to movies like Goodfellas, many more are as enjoyable. We have the perfect collection if you want to binge-watch more gangster movies.

1. Heat (1995)

  • Director: Michael Mann
  • Cast: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Jon Voight, Tom Sizemore, Diane Venora, and Amy Brenneman
  • IMDb rating: 8.3/10

This Michael Mann crime drama is a gloomy tribute to the gangster subgenre.

Heat goes into the complexities of the criminal life and the necessity to remain detached from everything to protect yourself and the people you love. 

Heat is a fascinating cinematic experience confronting the underground criminal from a nostalgic and melancholic perspective.

It has astounding scenes between the LAPD detective, portrayed by Al Pacino, and the thief, played by Robert De Niro. 

Heat is Michael Mann’s masterwork, much as Goodfellas is to Martin Scorsese.

Both directors immerse the spectator in the glittering shadows of the underworld. This is one of the amazing movies like Goodfellas.

2. The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

  • Director: Martin Scorsese
  • Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie, Matthew McConaughey, Kyle Chandler, Rob Reiner, and Jon Bernthal
  • IMDb rating: 8.2/10

The American biographical picture The Wolf of Wall Street, directed by Martin Scorsese, takes a brief diversion from the underworld.

The movie is based on the life of Leonardo DiCaprio’s character Jordan Belfort, a stockbroker who became well-known in the late 1980s and early 1990s. 

Although not comparable to movies like Goodfellas, it exhibits Scorsese’s insane talent.

Due to his illegal business tactics and participation in financial crimes, the movie shows Belfort’s ascent to prominence and subsequent fall from grace. 

Just talking about the story won’t do it credit; the storyline and the acting are excellent and immensely enjoyable.

This movie is both a critique of the banking industry’s greed and an exhilarating trip that keeps viewers interested from beginning to end.

3. The Departed (2006)

  • Director: Martin Scorsese
  • Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson, Mark Wahlberg, Martin Sheen, Ray Winstone, and Vera Farmiga,
  • IMDb rating: 8.5/10

The Departed is among the best movies like Goodfellas. Martin Scorsese transforms the Hong Kong thriller Infernal Affairs into a criminal epic that spans thirty years by setting the action in Boston. 

For the first time, Jack Nicholson collaborates with Martin Scorsese.

Also, he excels as a gangster in charge of South Boston who has a mole in the police force, played by Matt Damon, and no idea that he has one in his organization, Leonardo Di Caprio. 

Martin Sheen as a devoted police captain, Mark Wahlberg as his rude assistant, and Alec Baldwin all have excellent supporting performances, but Nicholson steals the show.

The whole time, the tension is maintained at its highest point since both young men will die if they are found. 

As DiCaprio gets closer to killing Nicholson but also getting closer to being discovered, which would mean his death, it’s clear how his anxiety is beginning to affect him.

4. Reservoir Dogs (1992)

  • Director: Quentin Tarantino
  • Cast: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Chris Penn, Steve Buscemi, Lawrence Tierney, and Randy Brooks
  • IMDb rating: 8.3/10

Reservoir Dogs, the feature movie debut of another legendary leader of the gangster genre, Quentin Tarantino, falters mostly in a botched bank heist that sets a group of criminals against one another. 

The contradictory realities of Mr. White, Mr. Orange, Mr. Blonde, and Mr. Pink are shown by Tarantino through his clever and captivating narrative, and tension is seen building at a warehouse. 

This brutal version of the gangster genre offers mafia fans a new alternative: abandoning the organization of the Mafia in Goodfellas and luring them into a chaotic complexity that ends in a duel between the remaining last man. This is undoubtedly one of the best movies like Goodfellas.

5. The Godfather (1972)

  • Director: Francis Ford Coppola
  • Cast: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Diane Keaton, Richard S. Castellano, Robert Duvall, and Sterling Hayden
  • IMDb rating: 9.2/10

The Godfather is undoubtedly one of the best movies like Goodfellas, with the finest crime dramas on this list.

It expertly combines the world of gangsters with romantic intrigue to create a touching family plot. 

The serious operatic tone of the movie maintains the story’s credibility. The roles of Michael Corleone and The Godfather, played by Marlon Brando, will always be remembered for their legendary performances.

The Corleone family, an Italian American mafia family with Vito and Michael Corleone as its two main members, is the subject of the movie’s narrative.

The family’s struggles from the beginning to the end are the central theme of the narrative.

This movie gives a potent drama with great character depth and a few scenes that will stick with you. 

The first movie gained so much praise and acclaim that the plot continued in the next two chapters.

As a result, it ranks among the most distinctive and enjoyable gangster movies like Goodfellas to date.

6. The Untouchables (1987)

  • Director: Brian De Palma
  • Cast: Kevin Costner, Sean Connery, Robert De Niro, Charles Martin Smith, Andy Garcia, Richard Bradford, and Jack Kehoe
  • IMDb rating: 7.8/10

The Untouchables is based on the true story of Eliot Ness, an agent for the U.S. Treasury who battled the renowned Al Capone, an organized crime leader in Chicago during the Prohibition period. 

Ness put up a group of operatives known as The Untouchables and started a relentless search for Capone despite being much outnumbered.

The conflict between organized crime and police and order is vividly and suspensefully portrayed in the movie. 

It is a traditional story of opposing forces that has captivated audiences for many years. After movies like Goodfellas, The Untouchables is a timeless gem to watch.

7. American Gangster (2007)

  • Director: Ridley Scott
  • Cast: Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Josh Brolin, Lymari Nadal, Ted Levine, Roger, and Guenveur Smith
  • IMDb rating: 7.8/10

A biographical crime epic based on the story of Frank Lucas, who Denzel Washington expertly portrays. Lucas was a Harlem crime boss who, for many years, brought heroin into the U.S. in the caskets of young soldiers who had died in combat. 

You witness Lucas ascend up the criminal ladder mercilessly, grabbing what he wants with force and pulling his whole family close to him to work for him since he trusts no one. 

The drug squad, commanded by career-obsessed Russell Crowe, is hot on his trail and won’t stop until he brings Lucas to justice.

It is a large, sprawling movie that travels all over the place, from the humid forests of Cambodia to the hot streets of Viet Nam. 

All of it is supported by Washington and Crowe, giving outstanding performances, both of whom know they will eventually face off against one another. 

American Gangster addresses topics of morality, criminality, and corruption and provides a complex portrait of its main characters, much like movies like Goodfellas.

8. Pulp Fiction (1994)

  • Director: Quentin Tarantino
  • Cast: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer, and Laura Lovelace
  • IMDb rating: 8.9/10

This non-linear work is set in the realm of crime, with Marcellus Wallace (Ving Rhames) as the lord. It examines people around him and how they fit into his criminal empire. 

The two most endearing characters in the movie are a pair of hitmen who go looking for a renegade boxer, played admirably by Bruce Willis.

They are expertly depicted with profound gravity by John Travolta and blazing rage by Samuel L. Jackson. 

It is a crazy trip that takes you by the throat and won’t let go. It is well written and filmed with harsh, strong strokes, pulling influence from the seventies cinema and Hong Kong movies. Directed with explosive flair, it is a gem of modern cinema. 

9. Gangs of Wasseypur (2012)

  • Director: Anurag Kashyap
  • Cast: Manoj Bajpayee, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Richa Chadha, Reema Sen, Piyush Mishra, and Huma Qureshi
  • IMDb rating: 8.2/10

Gangs of Wasseypur, an experimental movie by Anurag Kashyap, revived a dying subgenre of Indian cinema and received acclaim from critics and viewers alike. 

This movie, which centers on the coal mafia of Dhanbad, captured everyone’s attention with a story centered on retribution, political conflict, and a power struggle between three families. 

As a diversion from the usual crime thrillers, Kashyap’s film used a Tarantino-inspired manner to deal with gory and nauseating violence.

Yet despite this, the public yearned for it, and as a result, the movie gathered an entirely unknown fanbase. 

The suspenseful story, which Zeishan Quadri mostly authored, took place over a period of sixty years, from the 1940s to the 2000s.

The unique directorial style was mostly unknown to reviewers and spectators in India. 

The movie had a terrific background soundtrack that took ideas from Indian Folk songs and imparted a particular sense of Indian earthiness. This is one of the best movies like Goodfellas.

10. The Irishman (2019)

  • Director: Martin Scorsese
  • Cast: Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Joe Pesci, Harvey Keitel, Ray Romano, Bobby Cannavale, and Anna Paquin
  • IMDb rating: 7.8/10

Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman, starring Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Joe Pesci, is another one of his masterpieces.

However, much like Goodfellas, this movie is inspired by the real-life experiences of Mafia hitman Frank Sheeran. 

The movie follows Sheeran as he narrates his life and his decades-long association with the Mafia.

The Irishman is a beautiful movie that again displays the director’s and the actor’s skills. 

This movie has stunning cinematography, careful attention to detail, and an interesting perspective on the criminal underworld.

The Irishman is, without a doubt, another movie that fans of movies like Goodfellas should see.

11. Scarface (1983)

  • Director: Brian De Palma
  • Cast: Al Pacino, Michelle Pfeiffer, Steven Bauer, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Robert Loggia, Miriam Colon, and F. Murray Abraham
  • IMDb rating: 8.3/10

Scarface, one of the bloodiest and grittiest movies like Goodfellas ever made, tells the story of an exiled Cuban criminal who becomes the most powerful drug dealer in 1980s Miami. 

Filmmakers often credit Martin Scorsese as significantly affecting the mafia movie subgenre with the Brian De Palma movie.

Al Pacino, who plays the lead role, presented the movie after viewing the 1932 movie of the same name. 

The movie centered on cocaine trafficking and the rise of violence in America.

Al Pacino expertly portrayed the character of the loud-mouthed and short-tempered Tony Montana, who could be as ruthless as Satan himself. 

The fact that first reviews were not very complimentary, many thought the intensity, vulgarity, and explicit drug use were unnecessary. 

Scarface has subsequently gained a respite and transformed into one of the greatest mafia movies like Goodfellas of all time, earning a slot in the American Film Institute’s top 10 Gangster movies.

12. Lawless (2012)

  • Director: John Hillcoat
  • Cast: Tom Hardy, Shia LaBeouf, Guy Pearce, Jason Clarke, Jessica Chastain, Mia Wasikowska, and Dane DeHaan
  • IMDb rating: 7.2/10

Three brothers who smuggle alcohol are the center of this John Hillcoat-directed western criminal drama that musician Nick Cave wrote.

They must defend their company against a corrupt law enforcement officer who is out to shut them down. 

The legendary brothers are portrayed by Tom Hardy, Shia LaBeouf, and Jason Clarke, with Guy Pearce taking on the part of the cunning Special Deputy.

Lawless explores the morality of the worlds outside the rule of law and demonstrates how intelligence and brute force must work in harmony to survive. 

The bootlegging association’s leader, played by Tom Hardy’s Forrest Bondurant, is central to the movie’s attacks on organized crime, corruption, and brotherly relationships.

13. Once Upon a Time In America (1984)

  • Director: Sergio Leone
  • Cast: Robert De Niro, James Woods, Elizabeth McGovern, Treat Williams, Tuesday Weld, Burt Young, and Joe Pesci
  • IMDb rating: 8.3/10

This rich, haunting epic spans forty years in the Jewish Mafia. Viewers witness the rise and fall of Noodles and Max, two partners who join and ascend fast up the ranks to the organization’s top. 

It is lengthy at four hours, has a slow pace, and makes some odd decisions, but it manages to come together in telling a unique tale of devotion and treachery.

De Niro, Woods, and Tuesday Weld are all excellent, but Elizabeth McGovern is miscast. 

Highlights include stunning photography and eerie music. This is one of De Niro’s best acting performances.

Once Upon a Time In America is a real filmmaking work similar to movies like Goodfellas because of its complex plot and flawless performances.

14. Casino (1995)

  • Director: Martin Scorsese
  • Cast: Robert De Niro, Sharon Stone, Joe Pesci, James Woods, Don Rickles, Alan King, and Kevin Pollak
  • IMDb rating: 8.2/10

Martin Scorsese’s epic crime movie, The Casino, is another one of the amazing movies like Goodfellas.

It is based on the 1995 book of the same name by Nicholas Pileggi and tells the story of the Mafia’s involvement in Las Vegas gambling. 

Robert De Niro plays Sam Rothstein, a Jewish American professional gambler who manages the Tangiers Casino and hotel operations in Las Vegas. Yet doing his work is not a simple task. 

Due to the mob’s involvement, he finds it difficult to succeed in his relationships and at work.

You feel bad for his doomed existence since the whole issue is so compelling. The main highlights of this movie are the dialogue. 

There may be occasions when Casino looks pretty similar to movies like Goodfellas. With an outstanding plot and acting, it still stands out and leaves its impression.

15. The Gentlemen (2019)

  • Director: Guy Ritchie
  • Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Michelle Dockery, Jeremy Strong, Lyne Renée, Colin Farrell, and Henry Golding
  • IMDb rating: 7.8/10

The movie portrays a marijuana kingpin’s day-to-day activities and is another excellent mafia narrative from a director who excels in the gangster genre.

He encounters considerable resistance from other criminal characters in London as he works towards retiring from the game.

Movies by Guy Ritchie provide a fresh perspective on the underworld and are packed with amusing stories that include many eccentric characters in hysterically funny action scenes. 

His effort to bring together every aspect of his gangster cinema in The Gentlemen yields a jarring yet enormous action-comedy that adheres to the ‘king of the jungle’s rules. 

With his dynamic and sophisticated narrative, Guy Ritchie can take any Goodfellas fan on an exhilarating journey through the underworld.

16. City Of God (2002)

  • Director: Fernando Meirelles and Kátia Lund
  • Cast: Alexandre Rodrigues, Leandro Firmino, Matheus Nachtergaele, Phellipe Haagensen, Douglas Silva, Jonathan Haagensen, and Seu Jorge
  • IMDb rating: 8.6/10

Ciudade De Deus offers a look into the world of the favelas, where public institutions lack power and survival is decided by the desire to live. The movie was produced using performers that had little to no experience.

Children play with balls as much as they do with weapons under the brilliant Brazilian sky.

The City Of God is one of the critically praised movies like Goodfellas but set in a different underworld.

It succeeded in portraying its people’s romance, drama, and daily lives. 

It also portrays the organized crime that could be found in some regions of Rio de Janeiro.

The story follows a group of young people who resort to crime and cause mayhem in the streets. 

They later run across the narrator, a young guy who steers clear of crime and pursues his love for photography.

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