Glancing at Martin Scorsese's filmography in a nutshell at 80 

Today, as the pioneer of experimental cinema celebrates his birthday, we take a look at his symbolic narratives of social realism
Martin Scorsese/Instagram
Martin Scorsese/Instagram

American filmmaker, Martin Scorsese, a titan of the movie industry, is admired for his lengthy filmography, his love of cinema, his work to keep classic films alive for audiences, and his stature as a major figure in the enterprise

Directors like Tim Burton, Edgar Wright, Lynne Ramsay, and Luca Guadagnino share their favourite sequences and what Scorsese's work means to them in advance of his birthday. Scorcese, according to Woody Allen, has always been highly affected by concepts of a New York that may or may not have really existed, noting that Scorcese's impressions of New York are very genuine, very gritty, and extremely realistic. He further stated that Scorsese created films on it with ample excitement and veracity after experiencing firsthand its opaquer sides. “I saw all his pictures. Marty is one of the few directors whose movies are worthwhile to watch all the time,” he says. Let's take a moment to recall his films on his 80th birthday.

Despite not being Scorsese's debut film, Mean Streets (1973) was the one that really caught the attention of a sizable audience. But as time went on, it was eclipsed by his later crime films, such as Goodfellas, Casino, and The Departed. Mean Streets is still considered worth watching for Scorsese fans, even if only to see the director's first attempt at creating a crime drama, even though those movies may be more polished and arguably better. Fans recall Scorsese's signature style developing throughout the course of this movie in the genre for which he is best known. The film dealt with machismo and brutality while examining Catholic notions of guilt and atonement and served as a model for his directing techniques. 

Taxi Driver, a 1976 psychological thriller starring Robert De Niro, earned Scorsese the Palme d'Or at Cannes. Robert De Niro went on to star in eight more of the director's films, including New York, New York (1977), Raging Bull (1980), The King of Comedy (1982), Goodfellas (1990), and Casino (1995). With a number of projects starring Leonardo DiCaprio in the 2000s and 2010s, Scorsese enjoyed both box office success and critical praise. These movies include The Wolf of Wall Street (2010), Shutter Island (2010), The Aviator (2006), The Departed (2006), and Gangs of New York (2002). 

In terms of non-fiction, one of the earliest films Scorsese made was The Last Waltz, which was based on a Canadian-American rock band's Thanksgiving Day performance. The Band's performance of the evening's final song, their cover of the Marvin Gaye classic Don't Do It, as an encore, was captured on video for the 1978 concert documentary. The movie then cuts back to the start of the concert and proceeds to follow it roughly in order. The Band performs many of its hit songs, such as Up on Cripple CreekStage Fright, and The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down, with the assistance of a sizable horn section. 


Twitter: @PaulChokita

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