This has been the big talk of the week.
Martin Scorsese, one of cinema’s most venerated current directors, has decried superhero movies – the dominant force in today’s industry. The director of films such as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and Goodfellas told Empire magazine that his attempts to get up to speed with contemporary superhero films had failed.
“I tried, you know?” the director said when asked if he had seen Marvel’s movies. “But that’s not cinema.”
He continued: “Honestly, the closest I can think of them, as well made as they are, with actors doing the best they can under the circumstances, is theme parks. It isn’t the cinema of human beings trying to convey emotional, psychological experiences to another human being.”
Earlier this year, Avengers: Endgame became the highest grossing film in history after topping $2.8bn at the global box office (fifth highest after adjusting for inflation). Eight other titles from the same studio feature in the Top 30 (when factored without inflation).
Marvel head Kevin Feige last year defended his films against the kind of criticism levelled by Scorsese, saying that the series’s lack of major awards was no indication of a lack of quality or ambition.
“Maybe it’s easy to dismiss VFX or flying people or spaceships or billion dollar grosses,” Feige said. “I think it is easy to say that you have already been awarded in a certain way. [Alfred] Hitchcock never won best director, so it’s very nice, but it doesn’t mean everything. I would much rather be in a room full of engaged fans.”