United States, 1973 / 112 Mins
Director: Martin Scorsese
Starring: Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, David Proval
Martin Scorsese emerged as a generation-defining filmmaker with this gritty portrait of 1970s New York City, one of the most influential works of American independent cinema. Set in the insular Little Italy neighbourhood of Scorsese’s youth, Mean Streets follows guilt-ridden small-time ringleader Charlie (Harvey Keitel) as he deals with the debts owed by his dangerously volatile best pal, Johnny Boy (Robert De Niro), and pressure from his headstrong girlfriend, Teresa (Amy Robinson). As their intertwined lives spiral out of control, Scorsese showcases his precocious mastery of film style—evident in everything from his propulsive editing rhythms to the lovingly curated soundtrack—to create an electrifying vision of sin and redemption.