3. Casino (1995)
Ass-kicker: Pissed-off Mafia goons who’ve turned on their boss, Nicky Santoro
Victim: Nicky Santoro and his brother, Dominick
In Martin Scorsese’s brilliant Casino, volatile mob enforcer Nicky Santoro (Joe Pesci) does everything in his power to irk the O.G. Mafia heads, including banging powerful member Sam Rothstein’s (Robert De Niro) woman. So it’s inevitable that Nicky receives his comeuppance by the film’s end; only, in Casino, it’s not your run-of-the-mill, gangster pic tactic of a gunshot to the back of the head.
At the command of the mob’s Midwest bosses, Nicky’s crew drives him and his brother, Dominick, out into an isolated cornfield for some privacy, and, unfortunately for the Santoro boys, some batting practice. First up is Dominick, who’s beaten to a gory pulp with a metal baseball bat as Nicky is forced to watch in agony; then, it’s Nicky’s turn to have his forehead split open like a piñata. And, for one last insult, the thugs roll his lifeless, tighty-whitey-wearing body into a ditch, landing alongside his equally dead brother, and pour dirt over the fresh corpses. For our money, it’s the most brutal “whack” in mob movie history.