Watching movies made by Martin Scorsese, Casino and Goodfellas I can't help but notice that almost everyone of any significance that is not an Italian is a Jew or Jewish.

I mean even degrading comments involve Jews. Admittedly, I don't know much about Jewish people or the religion.

Here are just a few scenes as to what I am talking about.

  • 6
    Is this a question or a comment? BTW, James Conway (from Scorsese's Goodfellas) was Irish. Gangs Of New York also centered around the Irish. Of course, you could also say Scorsese's more famous movies centered around organized crime, and the Italians and Jews were central to that. Jews like Bugsy Siegel pretty much ran Vegas in its infancy. Check out the National Crime Syndicate for more connections. – Johnny Bones Apr 13 '17 at 12:55
  • @JohnnyBones, so was Ace Rothstein, that is my question why was someone either a Jew or Italian? And to answer your question, it has a question mark, so it is a question. – KyloRen Apr 13 '17 at 13:00
  • 6
    I am Italian-American that grew up in NE New Jersey and I literally didn't know what a protestant was until I moved to Va as a teenager. Everyone I knew was (or was assumed to be) Italian, Jewish, or Puerto Rican and thus either Catholic or Jewish. I am sure this isn't totally accurate but it is sure the way it seemed. I will add that this was in the late '70s and early '80s. When Scorsese was a kid, the ethnic groups were even more insular. – DQdlM Apr 13 '17 at 13:25
  • 1
    @KennyPeanuts, that is exactly what I wanted to know. I have no idea what it was like in those days and in those areas. – KyloRen Apr 13 '17 at 13:48
  • 1
    I will second Kenny above - I grew up in Brooklyn and the ethnic/religious mix was very similar - all Catholics and Jews of various ethnic backgrounds but mostly Italian, Irish or Eastern European. – Jeff D. Apr 13 '17 at 15:38

I think you are wrong in your perception:

  • Ace Rothstein is the only Jewish main character in Casino.
  • Karen Hill is the only Jewish main character in Goodfellas.

I don't remember these movies having that much Jewish characters. Other non Italian-American main characters of these two movies are Irish descent, or simply undescribed American characters.

Now about insults and degrading comments, this is a common trope in gangster movies where each gangster community (Irish, Russian, Jewish, Italian, American etc...) insults other ones with racist prejudices.

| improve this answer | |
  • I am not going to edit my question due to possible negative response to your answer, but I am trying to say that everything revolved around's Jewish and Italians. Why is this? – KyloRen Apr 13 '17 at 14:05
  • And what about the Jewish broad Nikky is trying to lay? – KyloRen Apr 13 '17 at 14:09
  • @KyloRen, In Godfellas Jimmy and Henry are Irish. I didn't count Nikky's broad as a main character. – Silver Bebs Apr 13 '17 at 14:19
  • 2
    @SilverBebs technically the question doesn't say anything about "main character"... it says "of any significance"... one could argue that means "anyone who's mentioned in the film". – Catija Apr 13 '17 at 16:06
  • 1
    @JohnnyBones, his Father was Irish and his Mother was Sicillian. – KyloRen Apr 13 '17 at 22:44

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .