Earlier this month legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese set off a debate among fans, filmmakers, writers and pretty much anyone with an interest in movies when he declared that Marvel moves are "not cinema" and went so far as to compare the superhero genre to theme parks -- fun, but no substance. Scorsese has since doubled down on those comments, but there are many that disagree with him and among those people are the showrunner of HBO's Watchmen Damon Lindelof with Lindelof saying it's not "fair" to put all Marvel films in one box.
Speaking with Variety, Lindelof explained that since not all Marvel movies are the same it's not fair and a bit inaccurate to lump them all together. He specifically noted that some Marvel films are a lot closer to Scorsese's definition of cinema than they get credit for.
"There's a space in Marvel movies that they are beginning to explore and are beginning to be provocative and interesting," Lindelof said. "Logan or Black Panther are very close in my opinion to cinema and to put all Marvel movies in the same box doesn't seem fair."
Lindelof may have something of a point there regarding Logan and Black Panther. Both of those films seemed to strike a different sort of chord than most other films based on Marvel characters and they are the two Marvel films that ended up receiving major Academy Award nominations. Logan was nominated for and won Best Adapted Screenplay -- the first live-action superhero film to do either -- while Black Panther became the first superhero film to receive a Best Picture nomination.
He went on to suggest that perhaps Scorsese's opinion comes without having really seen many Marvel films and noted that there's room for all kinds of movies out there as every taste is different.
"I'm just curious as to how many Marvel movies he has seen," Lindelof said. "I don't view it as a put down. I think there has to be space for popular entertainment and indie fare and cinema."
Earlier this month, Scorsese told Empire he didn't see the Marvel films as trying to convey "emotional, psychological experiences" in the way that "cinema" does, though he did admit that he had tried to watch Marvel films.
"I don't see them. I tried, you know? But that's not cinema," Scorsese said. "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."
Despite a bit of backlash over those comments, Scorsese went even further last week during an event tied to the release of his latest film, The Irishman.
"The value of a film that's like a theme park film, for example, the Marvel type pictures where the theaters become amusement parks, that's a different experience," he said. "As I was saying earlier, it's not cinema, it's something else. Whether you go for that or not, it is something else and we shouldn't be invaded by it. And so that's a big issue and we need the theater owners to step up for that to allow theaters to show films that are narrative films."0comments
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