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Celebrating Joe Pesci’s Birthday With 5 of His Best Lines in ‘GoodFellas’

In honor of Joe Pesci’s birthday, let’s take a look back at five of his best lines as Tommy DeVito in ‘GoodFellas’.

Joe Pesci Birthday GoodFellas Best Lines Tommy DeVito
Photo: Warner Bros.

Happy birthday to an absolute legend of the big screen, Joe Pesci. Born on Feb. 9, 1943, Pesci turns 79 years old today. While he has portrayed a number of different roles throughout his career, perhaps his most memorable character is Tommy DeVito in ‘GoodFellas‘. Even among a star-studded cast in one of the greatest gangster flicks of all time, Pesci stood out enough to win an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

So in honor of Joe Pesci’s birthday, let’s take a look back at five of his best lines as Tommy DeVito in ‘GoodFellas’.

5. Impending Danger

“He’s hanging on my neck like a vulture. Like impending danger.”

The dinner table scene is iconic for the dialogue preceding and following this line, but I couldn’t let this gem get lost in the shuffle. Tommy rolls through it so quickly he doesn’t even fully spit out “danger”, but it’s incredible nonetheless.

4. Settling Down

“I settle down almost every night, but then in the morning I’m free. I love you!”

Marriage ain’t in Tommy’s immediate plans, and he’s not afraid to let everyone know it — even his own mother. This is a great quick whip for my fellow single dudes.

3. Here’s A Wing!

“Here’s a wing! Hey, what do you like, the leg or the wing, Henry? Or ya still go for the old hearts and lungs?”

While digging up Billy Batts’ body to move it, Henry can’t stand the stench of decomposition. Jimmy and Tommy are unphased, however, and even make light of the scenario. This line from Tommy is morbid but hilarious, which also serves as a fitting descriptor of Joe Pesci’s character throughout the film.

2. Late For Your Own Funeral

“You’re always fuckin’ late, you’d be late for your own fuckin’ funeral.”

Stacks did himself in by not getting rid of the van following the Lufthansa heist. Of course, Tommy was the one to take care it, but not before letting Stacks know about his displeasure when it comes to tardiness.

1. Funny How?

“You mean — let me understand this, ‘cause, you know, maybe it’s me, I’m a little fucked up maybe, but I’m funny how, I mean, funny like I’m a clown, I amuse you? I make you laugh? I’m here to fuckin’ amuse you? What do you mean funny, funny how? How am I funny?”

Even those who haven’t seen ‘GoodFellas’ are surely familiar with the image/GIF/video of Ray Liotta as Henry Hill laughing uncontrollably. But who caused that reaction? Joe Pesci as Tommy DeVito.

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BS-Broadcast Journalism - University of Illinois 2016 | Editor-in-Chief at | Panelist on Four Feathers Podcast and Sox On Tap

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