If you've been paying attention to film news for the past several weeks, then you probably know that Martin Scorsese isn't exactly the biggest fan of Marvel movies. The legendary filmmaker has made no shortage of comments disparaging Marvel films as "not cinema" with the general implication being that the blockbuster films are somehow lesser, lacking genuine human drama and taking no real risks in storytelling. While the comments have been met with backlash, Scorsese hasn't backed off and even went into even more depth in a recent New York Times op-ed. On Tuesday, Patton Oswalt weighed in with his thoughts on Scorsese's opinion.
On Twitter, Oswalt shared an image from Scorsese's Goodfellas with the declaration that while he loves Marvel films, Scorsese gets to have his own opinions.
"I love Marvel movies. I love comic book movies. But Martin Scorsese gets to have any goddam opinion about film that he goddamn wants," Oswalt writes.
In the New York Times piece, Scorsese attempted to explain that Marvel films -- and presumably films in other large, blockbuster franchises -- differ from what he knows and understands to be "cinema". Specifically, he said that Marvel films lack those elements.
"Many of the elements that define cinema as I know it are there in Marvel pictures," Scorsese writes. "What's not there is revelation, mystery or genuine emotional danger. Nothing is at risk. The pictures are made to satisfy a specific set of demands, and they are designed as variations on a finite number of themes."
While one could honestly read that and still not agree with Scorsese and make some pretty compelling arguments against him, the fact remains that Scorsese has his own opinions, as does Oswalt and the countless others talking about the matter. Everyone has an opinion and their own ideas of what they like versus dislike and what they see as art, and Oswalt's comment -- specifically the "But Martin Scorsese gets to have any goddamn opinion about film that he goddamn wants" -- also takes things a bit further when one considers Scorsese's work beyond his own actual films. Oswalt also re-tweeted a post by NYT columnist Jamelle Bouie that notes Scorsese has done extensive work trying to bring new filmmakers and others into the industry. Scorsese isn’t just rattling off an opinion to be controversial. It’s one he’s formed out of his own experiences, both behind the camera as a filmmaker and as someone working to bring other filmmakers up as well. He doesn’t need any of us to agree – or disagree – with him.
What do you think about Oswalt's take? Let us know in the comments below.
Scorsese's latest film The Irishman is set for release on Netflix November 27th.
Upcoming Marvel movies include Black Widow on May 1, 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, Loki in Spring 2021, WandaVision in Spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, What If…? In Summer 2021, Hawkeye in Fall 2021, Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021, and Black Panther 2 on May 6, 2022. Announced properties without release dates include Blade, She-Hulk, Moon Knight, and Ms. Marvel.