Known for portraying hardened criminals and dysfunctional characters, Robert De Niro is considered one of the greatest actors in American cinema. He appeared in more than 100 films and bagged several prestigious awards and nominations while working with noted filmmakers like Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Brian De Palma and Sergio Leone. As the Hollywood icon turns 78 this year, we look at five award-winning films starring him.
Mean Streets (1973)
Mean Streets was the start of De Niro’s collaboration with Martin Scorsese. He portrays a reckless man who dabbles in petty crimes and owes money to criminals, creating problems for him and others. De Niro won a few acting awards for his performance.
The Godfather: Part II (1974)
De Niro portrays a young Vito Corleone in this sequel to The Godfather (1972). Filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola’s critically acclaimed crime drama shows the rise of Vito from a grocery store worker to the most feared mafia lord in America. De Niro won an Academy Award for his performance. The film won a total of six Oscars.
Taxi Driver (1976)
De Niro re-teamed with Scorsese to play Travis Bickle, a Vietnam War veteran who drives a taxi at night in New York and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. Isolation, personal failures and corruption in New York triggers violent thoughts in Travis. He becomes a vigilante to rescue a child prostitute named Iris (Jodie Foster), leading him to commit murders. The film won the Palme d’Or at Cannes.
Raging Bull (1980)
Scorsese and De Niro collaborated again in this biographical film about American boxer Jake LaMotta and won his second Oscar and a Golden Globe. LaMotta is successful in the boxing ring, but his excessive rage, temper, jealousies and destructive attitude shatters his personal life.
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
In this David O’Russell film, De Niro played Patrizio Solitano Sr, the father to Bradley Cooper’s lead character, who suffers from bipolar disorder. He plans to open a restaurant and bets on American football games. De Niro received praise for his performance and received an Oscar nomination.