Let me start by saying this: I LOVE cinema, in all its shapes and shades. Do I love all the genres? No. As any person, I have preferences, things I will go and watch regardless, and thing you’d never see me buying a ticket for.
And I still love cinema, all of it.
I love the sense of wonder, the cut from reality, the surprise. It’s like being a little kid again, listening to my mom reading me a new story.
All the above are the reasons why the big-shot directors’ dissing of the Marvel movies didn’t go well with me.
No because are against Marvel movies, which I love, but because, to me, those critics go against what the essence of cinema is. At the very least, they list track of what cinema is.
Case in point: Scorsese vs Marvel. I’m building this post on Vox’s article about Scorsese’s (that comes from a Times interview) unhappy declaration, and try to make my case from it.
He opens by saying, “I don’t think they’re cinema. I was asked a question about Marvel movies. I answered it. I said that I’ve tried to watch a few of them and that they’re not for me, that they seem to me to be closer to theme parks than they are to movies as I’ve known and loved them throughout my life.”
All right. So, what is a movie?
Based on Webster’s big book, a movie is a story or event recorded by a camera as a set of moving images and shown in a theater or on television; a motion picture.
Let me check what’s in a Marvel movie.
A story – Checked
Recorded on camera – Checked
Shown in a theater – Checked
Let me add:
Actors – Checked.
Directors & Co – Checked.
Hmm, bizarre. All the elements are there.
With the reference to theme parks, I guess Scorsese wanted to say that many things in those movies are not real. Aka: CGI.
Let’s not consider the age of Mr. Scorsese. Instead, let’s look at when one of his masterpieces was made: The Goodfellas, 1990.
Other things that, like the Marvel movies, were made after 1990 (Iron Man, the first Marvel movie, was made in 2008) are:
My brother Umberto (1991).
Text messages (1992).
I’m not gonna touch the music industry (hey, iPod and mp3, I’m looking at you guys), or the medical field here, only entertainment. And my brother.
I guess we must, for the horror of the more adult people, call it, I don’t know, progress?
My grandpa Angelo loved anything that was new. My 65+ neighbor does too, that guy is really cool. But generally speaking, most very-adult people are not down with progress. And it’s okay. You know, the generational fight and stuff.
What got me confused was Mr. Scorsese’s other statement.
“So, you might ask, what’s my problem? Why not just let superhero films and other franchise films be? The reason is simple,” Scorsese wrote. “In many places around this country and around the world, franchise films are now your primary choice if you want to see something on the big screen.” … “If you’re going to tell me that it’s simply a matter of supply and demand and giving the people what they want, I’m going to disagree,” he wrote in the Times. “It’s a chicken-and-egg issue. If people are given only one kind of thing and endlessly sold only one kind of thing, of course they’re going to want more of that one kind of thing.”
First of all, thank you for saying that millions of people are idiotic sheep.
The problem with me was that he started out with what sounded like a crusade for ART, and he ended up talking about giving a product. If there’s a product, there’s a market. If there’s a market, there’s money.
If we want to talk money, let’s.
Unicorns should still live (Unicorns are not about money, but their extinction can be put in the “bad things” column).We’re all on the same page on this one.
Capitalism (Marvel does have a truckload of money or two. Or ten.) is the spawn of the devil.
Monopoly (what he said Marvel is holding) is bad.
Seems like the problem had become a monopoly one, not one of bad art.
Buy you know, actually, if you read the data (and if you don’t trust me, refer to the article I linked at the beginning), you’ll see that no, we’re not given only one thing.
The overall picture of movies released in 2018 compared with the Marvel or Disney output doesn’t match Scorsese’s assertion that moviegoers “are given only one kind of thing.”
On a side note, the three biggest beer companies are Bud Light (28.3%), Budweiser (11.9%) and Coors Light (9.9%). Anybody’s bitching about that? Nope. Does it make it difficult for smaller beer companies to live? Sure. But there are tons of local breweries around, for those who still love their Bud but want something different. Do the brewery down in Key West and Coors make the same amount of money? Let’s laugh all together. Does it make it wrong, for Bud or Coors, to exist? No.
All that being said, I’d only have one question for Mr. Scorsese and all the other naysayers: why do you think people go to see the movies?
I think the answer is because movies tell a story.
Fifty years ago like yesterday.
Small production movies, if well made, will still make us laugh and cry with them just as much as the next blockbuster.
Personally, I love The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly and The Untouchable just as much as I love Dr. Strange.
They all have in common engaging stories and emotionally believable characters.
They give us emotions.
And to conclude this post, my advice to the previously mentioned naysayers would be to get down from that high horse of yours, and come partying with people who, more sincerely than you, love cinema for what it is:
Who knows, you might even have fun.
About Viviana MacKade
Beach bum and country music addicted, Viviana lives in a small Floridian town with her husband and her son, her die-hard fans and personal cheer squad. She spends her days between typing on her beloved keyboard, playing in the pool with her boy, and eating whatever her husband puts on her plate (the guy is that good, and she really loves eating). Besides beaching, she enjoys long walks, horse-riding, hiking, and pretty much whatever she can do outside with her family.
The best way to know me is through my website (and the books I host): http://www.viviana-mackade.blog/
GUNS FOR ANGELS by Viviana MacKade
My sister was all the family I had. She was taken from me and now, someone wants me dead, too. Not sure why.
I’m sure I’m not going to give my life up, though. I’m not going to let them get away with my sister’s murder.
The new me will try, anyway.
You see, when she was alive I could live in brightness and peace. Now I have to accept the darkness within me. After all, isn’t life about balance? Ironically, the man who can teach me how to embrace the shadows is broken, hopeless, and angry. Mark is also the only one I trust to lead me through my heart’s night, and back into the light.
The one I trust to keep us alive.
A favor to a teammate: pick up two girls in trouble, take them to the Team’s safehouse. Should have been easy. It was not.
Then someone killed one of my team, one of my brothers. Now it’s personal.
They want me, too. I can deal with that. But they want Ann. The only person who cut through me, who woke me, who grabbed my hand and guided me back into life one smile at the time.
I’ll be damned if I let them have anything.
Not. One. Damned. Thing.
From NY to sunny Miami, Ann and Mark run into a maze of lie, betrayal, and death, where love is the only, terrifying certainty. And when truth unravels, they will have to risk all to survive.
They entered a narrow hall, its bare walls painted in a subdued magnolia. At their left, an old, dark wooden staircase led upstairs. The veil of dust on the handrail carried fresh scars where hands had touched not long ago. A strange smell saturated the house, one Ann didn’t have a name for. It was out of place and mean. It reminded her of the last moments in her house, when those men had broken in shooting and screaming. Could fear smell? Could death?
At the end of the corridor, a door opened into a tiny bathroom. At its side, another door was ajar. The afternoon sun filtered through the crack, as if the room strained to contain all the light in it.
Mark’s face was detached, set into a mask as he prodded the door with his fingertips. More light poured into the hall.
Her heart rate rocketed as they waited at the door’s side. Ann wanted to scream to fill the silence.
Seconds ticked away. Drenched air mingled with fear ran down her neck in rivulets of sweat. Mark gestured her to stay and took a step inside the room.
She peeked from behind him, saw it was empty. A laugh crawled through the ball of fear at the base of her chest, asking to be freed, but her elation didn’t live long.
“There’s trouble in this house,” Mark told her in a tense whisper after looking around in the empty room. He walked out, moved toward the stairs with light strides.
Lightheaded, Ann followed him holding the piece of paper he’d given her as if her life depended on it. Funny that it might just be the case.
And they say paper and ink are useless, nowadays, she mused to herself.
At the top of the staircase, Mark opened the door with his foot; when nothing happened he stepped inside. Ann stayed behind him.
The upstairs was as big as the whole house. Ann let her eyes run over the filing cabinets, all lined up like little soldiers along the low walls, dutifully closed against prying eyes. An open skylight looked up into the blue sky where a lonely cloud plodded away, but no air came in from it to ease the heat. The walls were plain white up here, amplifying the light and the room’s emptiness.
A body lay on the floor. It swam in blood.
Ann’s mind didn’t recognize it at first, didn’t understand it, but at some point her brain caught up with her eyes. Her senses floated away to the sound of her own blood withdrawing from her head, the outline of her surrounding faded into white. A commanding, familiar voice called her but it was muffled, and too far away. When the white completely closed in, she let go.
Ann. It was Mark’s first thought when he saw Mouse’s body.
When he turned to take her away, to spare her other memories she shouldn’t cash in, it was too late. He would protect her from any harm but he had no power against what she saw.
She paled, her eyes lost focus, and then she went down