The Godfather crowned the UK's favourite gangster movie with Pulp Fiction coming a close second

The Godfather has been voted the UK’s favourite gangster movie of all time, according to new national research.

By Jon Peake
Thursday, 3rd March 2022, 11:05 am
Updated Thursday, 3rd March 2022, 11:23 am

The study saw the Francis Ford Coppola film take top spot (22%), beating Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction (20%) and Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas (18%), according to research carried out by Showcase Cinemas.

The cinema group commissioned the study to celebrate its flashback screenings of all three movies from The Godfather franchise, the first of which hit the big screen 50 years ago.

The UK’s favourite actor in a gangster movie went to big screen legend Robert De Niro. De Niro’s gritty portrayal of mafia man Jimmy Conway in Goodfellas earned him top honours (25%), while Al Pacino’s Michael Corleone in The Godfather (23%) and Samuel L. Jackson’s darkly comical Jules Winnfield from Pulp Fiction (17%) rounded off the top three.

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A scene from The Godfather

The Godfather (26%), Scarface (19%) and Ocean’s Thirteen (13%), were named Pacino’s best gangster movies, while Goodfellas (23%), The Godfather Part II (21%) and The Untouchables (18%) were voted as De Niro’s top three.

Elsewhere, the iconic line from The Godfather Part II, “Keep your friends close, but your enemies closer”, was named the nation’s favourite quote from a gangster film with a quarter of the votes (25%), while “I’m going to make him an offer he can’t refuse” (23%) from the first film in the trilogy and “Say hello to my little friend” from Scarface (17%) followed closely behind.

In a surprising result, the iconic dance-off between John Travolta and Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction was voted the best scene from a gangster movie (18%), with Michael Corleone shooting Captain McCluskey and Virgil “The Turk” Sollozo in The Godfather (16%) coming second and the climactic Mexican standoff in Reservoir Dogs (14%) coming third.

But which decade produced the best gangster movies?

John Travolta and Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction

The poll revealed that the 1980s took top spot with almost one in four votes (23%). Meanwhile, the 1970s (21%) and the 1990s (20%) were both selected by around one in five people.

Elsewhere, almost half of Brits (49%) believe that The Godfather is one of the best film franchises of all time, with fewer than one in ten (9%) disagreeing with the claim.

In celebration of its 50th anniversary, The Godfather is now being screened at select Showcase Cinemas nationwide, with tickets available here.Tickets are also available for sequels, with Part 2 screening on 6 and 7 March: Info here.And Part 3 showing on 13 and 14 March: Info here.

UK’S TOP TEN GANGSTER MOVIES1. THE GODFATHER (22%)2. PULP FICTION (20%)3. GOODFELLAS (18%)4. RESERVOIR DOGS (16%)5. BONNIE AND CLYDE (15%)6. THE UNTOUCHABLES (14%)7. SCARFACE (13%)8. GANGS OF NEW YORK (13%)9. THE FRENCH CONNECTION (13%)10. BUGSY MALONE (12%)

UK’S TOP TEN ACTORS IN A GANGSTER MOVIE1. ROBERT DE NIRO (25%)2. AL PACINO (23%)3. SAMUEL L. JACKSON (17%)4. MARLON BRANDO (14%)5. LIAM NEESON (14%)6. TOM HARDY (14%)7. DENZEL WASHINGTON (14%)8. JOE PESCI (13%)9. MICHAEL CAINE (13%)10. SEAN CONNERY (13%)