Robert de Niro is often considered to be the best actor of a generation, thanks primarily to his depth of skills and the range of films that he has starred in. Because of this, selecting de Niro’s greatest hits may well be considered as an exercise in futility, as it would trigger so much debate that it is difficult to imagine a favourable consensus being reached. His efforts are worthy of consideration, however, especially as he is responsible for some of the seminal moments in modern movie history.
So allowing for a subjective viewpoint, here are Robert de Niro’s top three movie performances of all times.
A cult classic, Raging Bull is a viscerally violent and gripping journey into the world of one of boxing’s most fascinating stars. Recounting the career and backstory of Jake LaMotta, Di Niro put in staggering performance that is generally considered to have heralded the birth of method acting. De Niro won a Best Actor Oscar for his incredible performance, having trained to a peak of fitness for the middle portion of LaMotta’s career before piling on 70 pounds to showcase the boxer’s tragic and almost inevitable descent once he had retired.
Although not commonly referenced as one of de Niro’s best films, the intensity of his performance in Casino is worthy of recollection. Portraying the role of Jewish American gambling handicapper Sam ‘Ace’ Rothstein, he performed with an incredible intensity and carried the type of threat that is ideal for captivating global audiences. Employed by the Italian Mob to oversee the day-to-day operations at the fictional Tangiers casino in the U.S., de Niro’s performance is a far from cry from the world of mobile casinos and incredibly generous online roulette bonus packages.
The Godfather, Part II
An instant classic, the first instalment of the Godfather is widely considered to be one of the best films of all time. While this may be the case, however, purists will often claim that The Godfather, Part II is actually a superior piece of cinematography. Much of the argument is based upon the performance of de Niro, who won rave reviews from critics for his performance and even earned a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his efforts. The trilogy is certainly worth a watch, even though the third film lacks the intensity and appeal of its preceding titles.