Robert De Niro is one of the most successful Italian-American actors of all time. Although he was born in New York, he holds dual American and Italian citizenship. This award-winning actor has enjoyed a prolific career in the film industry and has played leading roles in many blockbuster movies. Here are five of Robert De Niro’s top movies.
1. Raging Bull
De Niro won an Academy Award for Best Actor for ‘Raging Bull’ in which he portrayed Jake LaMotta. This 1980 biographical black-and-white sports drama was directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Paul Schrader and Mardik Martin. It is based on boxer Jake LaMotta’s memoirs from ‘Raging Bull: My Story’. This character was a self-destructive, obsessive, and jealous man whose behavior destroyed the lives of his family. The film was both a financial and commercial success.
2. Taxi Driver
In this 1976 psychological thriller, Robert De Niro plays taxi driver Travis Bickle who is an honorably discharged U.S. Marine. He drives taxis to help him cope with depression and insomnia. He has the urge to take violent action, which is only fuelled by the sleaze of New York City at night. He also attempts to liberate a 12-year-old prostitute who is played by Jodie Foster. The film was written by Paul Schrader and directed by Martin Scorsese. This low-budget movie cost just $1.3 million to make but grossed $28.3 million at the worldwide box office.
3. Once Upon a Time in America
‘Once Upon a Time in America’ is an epic crime drama that was released in 1984. It was directed and co-written by Sergio Leone. The film is about a group of friends who lead youths from a Jewish ghetto into the world of organized crime in New York City. De Niro plays the lead role of ‘Noodles’. Others who star in this film include James Woods, Elizabeth McGovern, Treat Williams, Tuesday Weld, and Richard Bright. When the first released, it was a flop in America. However, this movie is now considered a masterpiece and is often referred to as one of the greatest gangster movies of all time.
‘Goodfellas’ is a 1990 crime film that was written by Nicholas Pileggi and directed by Martin Scorsese. The film is about the rise and fall of mob associate Henry Hill and his friends and associates. The film covers the period from 1955 to 1980. Robert De Niro plays James ‘Jimmy the Gent’ Conway. Others who star in this movie include Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco, and Paul Sorvino. From a budget of $25 million, this film grossed $46.8 million at the worldwide box office. It is widely regarded as one of the best films about organized crime that has ever been made.
‘Casino’ is another epic crime drama starring De Niro. This film was released in 1995, was written by Nicholas Pileggi, and was directed by Martin Scorsese. It is based on a non-fiction book and was the eighth collaboration between De Niro and Scorsese. In the film, De Niro plays Sam ‘Ace’ Rothstein who is a Jewish American working for the Italian Mob running one of their casinos. The film also starred Joe Pesci, Sharon Stone, Don Rickles, James Woods, and Kevin Pollak. This film grossed $116.1 million from a budget of between $40 and 50 million.