Reposted from the archives, to help celebrate #BRWC10.
We take a look at the Top 10 gangster movies based on real events, and famous gangsters.
This film adaptation of the 1986 non-fiction book Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi, who co-wrote the screenplay with Scorsese, follows the rise and fall of Lucchese crime family associates Henry Hill and his friends over a period from 1955 to 1980. The Lucchese crime family was at the height of its reign in 1978 after the famous Lufthansa heist. The character of Jimmy Conway was based on real-life mobster Jimmy Burke who was still alive when the film was released in 1990. He would have been eligible for parole in 2004, but he died of lung cancer in 1996, while still in prison.
Greed, deception, money, power, and murder occur between two mobster best friends and a trophy wife over a gambling empire. Set in Las Vegas, Martin Scorsese shows the glamorous and cruel faces of the city as the details of the mob involvement in the casinos of the 1970’s and 80’s are revealed. Robert De Niro’s character, Ace, a smooth operator of the Tangiers casino, is based on the life of Frank ‘Left’ Rosenthal. While the movie begins by stating it is based upon a true story, it never names the actual casino involved. The Tangiers casino is fictional. The story is actually based upon the history of the Stardust casino, a fact well documented in the Vegas history books. Martin Scorsese discreetly documents this fact via the soundtrack, in which the song “Stardust” is heard three different times. An instrumental version plays during Ace and Ginger”s wedding and a vocal version is heard during the scene where Remo asks Marino if Nicky and Ginger are having sex and also during the very end of the final credits.
One common theme through many of the best gangster films ever made is the presence of a casino, or at least some kind of gambling. If you want to get yourself a slice of the glamour and glitz that comes with gambling, but you don’t fancy getting on the wrong side of any gangsters then why not try your luck at some free online casino games? You can roll the dice, spin the wheel, and keep your cards close to your chest without worrying about getting caught in the middle of a mafia gun battle!