20 Suspiciously Similar Movie Scenes You Never Noticed
7. Boogie Nights/ GoodFellas
It's no secret that Paul Thomas Anderson is a fan of Martin Scorsese's long filmography, and like many artists, Anderson started out by creating a love song to his idol. The very foundation of Boogie Nights is built upon the same template as Goodfellas: both films follow the same take on the dark side of the American Dream, and more specifically, Anderson also emulates Scorsese's cinematic language in Boogie Nights, particularly in the opening. In Goodfellas, just as he is rising through the ranks of the family, Henry takes future wife Karen to the Copacabana, and through one long tracking shot, we see his status confirmed in how other characters interact with him. The scene serves as a snapshot of the decadence of Henry's world, against a typically strong musical backdrop of "And Then He Kissed Me" as a rather blatant (but not unwelcome) metaphor for Karen's seduction into the world.
Anderson's Boogie Nights opens with a very similar complex tracking shot that follows Jack and Amber to their seats at a night club. As they walk through Hot Traxx, the ensemble cast of the film is introduced. Like Goodfellas the scene is punctuated by a song in this case, it's "Best Of My Love," and again the point it to establish the atmosphere of the culture in focus.
In the end this more of an example of A homage than a direct rip-off of another film: both scenes are working to the same agenda, and Anderson is clearly paying his creative dues.