As water levels continue to plunge at alarming rates in drought-stricken areas of the western U.S., strange discoveries are occurring around Lake Mead just outside of Las Vegas. Most notably, water levels have dropped so low that barrels containing human remains are being discovered on a daily basis. While investigators have determined that most of the remains date back to the 1970s and ’80s, they have not officially tied the victims to mob-related activity — even though everyone knows the remains are tied to mob-related activity. Naturally, this ignited a debate at the Keys Weekly offices, over which mob movies are the best to ever hit the big screen. Always here to help, here are our….
Top 10 Greatest Mob (or Mafia, or Gangster) Movies Ever Made
10. “Once Upon a Time in America” (1984): You’ll recognize most of the films on this list, but for younger readers, this one might not ring a bell. Do yourself a favor, either watch it for the first time or revisit this classic.
9. “Casino” (1995): You’ll see De Niro’s name all over this list, along with Pesci and others, but Sharon Stone should have won every award possible for her performance in this film. It’s another Scorsese classic and can be debated for a much higher position on this list.
8. “The Untouchables” (1987): The ’80s were dominated by Cold War-fueled action movies, but “The Untouchables” has withstood the test of time. With a cast that includes Connery, Costner, De Niro and Garcia, it’s one of the best Al Capone and Eliot Ness stories ever created.
7. “Donnie Brasco” (1997): The mid to late ’90s witnessed a revival for gangster movies, but the chemistry between Pacino and Depp gave movie fans a refreshing twist of empathy for the bad guys.
6. “Scarface” (1983): You can’t talk about gangster movies without mentioning “Scarface.” Perhaps one of the most quoted movies of all time, it could only be Al Pacino in the role of Tony Montana, “a political refugee.”
5. “The Departed” (2006): “Get him a cranberry juice.” From Damon, DiCaprio, Wahlberg and Nicholson, this film has it all. Not only is it one of the best mob movies ever made, it’s one of the best movies ever made.
4. “Heat” (1995): Michael Mann created a cool, existential feel for this film, basing De Niro and Pacino’s cat-and-mouse chase around L.A. Not to mention, this was vintage Val Kilmer during the Val Kilmer era.
3. “Goodfellas” (1990): Although Scorsese is considered a cinematic deity, this film is arguably his masterpiece. If you don’t know Joe Pesci’s lines from this movie, you simply don’t know gangster movies.
2. “The Godfather II” (1974): It was an origin story before origin movies were cool and it is arguably just as flawless as part one. The film also gave us a young Al Pacino and Robert De Niro in the same 202 minutes of perfection.
1. “The Godfather” (1972): It was the first installment of Coppola’s epic trilogy and it not only defined any gangster movie after, it changed the scope of movies altogether.
Other arguments were made for: “A Bronx Tale,” “American Gangster,” “Road to Perdition,” “Reservoir Dogs,” “Public Enemy,” “Little Caesar” and “Eastern Promises.”