Part 5 – Project 1 – Exercise

Watch this famous scene from Goodfellas:

What does this scene tell you about the main character? How does it do this? List the ‘clues’.

This is scene is a long take following the main character and his date through a back entrance to a prolific club. You can tell this is the main character, as no other extras are given much screen time, as the camera man is just following these two. You can also tell this is a prolific club as there is a long queue to get in and a lot of buzz once they get inside.

The main character seems like a wealthy man, and a bit of a show off. You understand this from the shot by him handing cash to every attendant that he passes. He is also a well dressed man, goes in through the back entrance – skipping the queue, and is able to pay for his car to be taken by the valet staff.

This man is clearly well known and an important person. All the staff are tending to his every need, there are things done for him without asking (table being set up and champagne brought to his table sent from someone). The main character greets everyone he passes, as well as being greeted by people that work/own the club emphasising that people are trying to keep him well looked after.

We understand that this character isn’t completely what he seems, as he lies about what job he does. Even if the audience were not aware of what his actual job was, he seems shifty when the lady asks him what he does for a living. Adding to that there is a subtle drum roll from the band when he announces this.


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