Scorsese and the Moving Picture

GeorgeCant94 By GeorgeCant94, 2nd Aug 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Reviews>Film & TV>Drama

Martin Scorsese has been both a critical and commercially successful director since the 1970s. In many ways he has epitomised post-modernism but in doing so he has changed things for so many future directors (such as Quentin Tarantino and David. O Russell). He has brought a culture to prominence in Breathless fashion and never failed to let our minds settle or our expectations take shape.

The Cinephile

Directors are curious elements to the film industry. One the one hand, they, together with the writers, are heavily responsible for the creativity and entertainment we enjoy. On the other hand, however, they tend to have so much more of a low profile than actors that the general public rarely knows what they look like; we might create an image of them in our mind that corresponds to the style of film we see them make. Well, Martin Scorsese grew up an isolated child, suffering from severe asthma, in a region of New York known as 'Little Italy'. Since he could not go out and experience the things children might usually experience outdoors, he was very often taken to the cinema as a child- and so became the world's biggest cinephile. Yet we see Scorsese as one of the most laid-back, friendly, charismatic directors who embodies a love of one's profession- he is the coolest of all film geeks.

Blazing a Trail

Martin Scorsese began his illustrious career from the very beginning literally. Mean Streets was the place which raised both Scorsese himself and the drama of his first hit. Taking place in Little Italy, it introduced the world to a fellow Italian-American- Robert De Niro. Scorsese's trademark style blossoms here- the emphasis on crime, masculinity, brotherhood. Goodfellas may have gone for the jugular in this regard but Mean Streets took us into the heart and soul of what it really means to try and make a living in this way- his characters drift through looking for their next payday, searching for kicks and tricks just like kids; they believe like many of us that their big break is just around the corner- no matter how futile this notion may be. And that is the essence here- futility- the futility of loyalty, chivalry, of 'making yourself known'. This life of crime is Big men flashing their guns like little boys. Pop music beats the corners of his streets and love is not an out of this life. It very much flows like 'American Graffiti' or 'Dazed and Confused', a hazy rhythm that somehow sets its world a light, as we wait for the inevitable climax that will put perspective to everything. This is Scorsese at his finest and the charisma and earthy charm is hard to match.

What's Great

Scorsese goes on to tell many tales in a similar vein- the small time crook attempting to go big, the love for New York, the pain of masculinity. Taxi Driver gave the city a bigger role, Goodfellas became bigger and more indulgent than anyone could have foretold, and the Wolf of Wall Street emphasized greed and deceit and as part of the male psyche. What Scorsese does best, however, is create Breathlessly entertaining pieces. His camera always has something to say, whether solemnly peering down a hallway in Taxi Driver or restlessly following the trail of criminal success in the Copacobana nightclub of Goodfellas. Scorsese is a celebrated film historian and preserver, and clearly he has not forgotten the fundamental and original purpose of film- a fairground attraction intended to provide adrenaline. The stories are unnervingly relevant, the drama flies in a million directions we never forget the first time we saw That Scorsese Moment. While becoming a symbol of both cult and general acclaim, he has branched off from violence, lust and masculine indulgences, making family fair 'Hugo' and moving to work in documentaries. He has never forgotten his audience, and in return we never forget his work.


Breathless, Drama, Film, Film Actors, Film Director, Film Festival, Film History, Film Making, Film Review, Film Star, Filmmaking, Films, Gangster, History, Italian-American, Rags To Riches

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author avatar GeorgeCant94
Hailing from the UK but studying in America, I am a soccer player with a passion for travel, adventure, and the diversity and delicate balance that makes people so unique and richly interesting.

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author avatar Retired
4th Aug 2014 (#)

Interesting piece here on the cinematic talents of the great Scorsese. He takes a theme or an intangible concept and brings it to life on the big screen with color, texture, superb acting, and a script that delivers the story to your heart and gut at the same time. Scorsese integrates all in ways no others can. I would love to know what you think of some of Scorsese's favorite actors.

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