Three Times Marvel Delivered Cinematic Masterpieces, Despite What Martin Scorsese Thinks
Oh Marty, you had to go there.
We love Scorsese, it goes without saying. Do we even need to explain ourselves?
Mean Streets, Taxi Driver and Raging Bull, basically Robert De Niro at his best. More? Goodfellas and Casino. Later he has teamed up with Leonardo DiCaprio for masterpieces like Gangs of New York, The Departed and The Wolf of Wall Street.
And now, this year’s highly anticipated The Irishman.
But we have to take issue with him saying that Marvel films are not “cinema”.
"I don’t see them. I tried, you know? But that’s not cinema,” the Oscar-winning director told Empire magazine. “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.”
No doubt Scorsese is referencing the proliferation of CGI, and the effect this has on actors showcasing, or not, their art to its fullest.
But that ignores that even full-on animation features, like Aladdin or the Toy Story series, can make emotional connections. While CGI can become excessive, as long as the end result connects with the audience, surely that should not matter. After all, the whole point of cinema is escapism that creates new worlds.
You may not be into the Marvel films, but there is no denying that they have created a whole new universe. The Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Here are three Marvel films that certainly qualify as cinematic masterpieces.
Not all Marvel films hit the mark, but the one that tied up all the loose ends certainly did.
Epic, dark and funny at once and with plenty of heart, what more could you ask for?
And you’ll have to have a heart of stone not to fall in love with the finale which saw all the Avengers assemble to take on Thanos and save the universe.
Or, in fact, fall in love with cinema.
A landmark film for black cinema.
The story of T’Challa, aka Black Panther, attempting to unite five African tribes into the nation of Wakanda, covered such weighty topics as race, sovereignty and female empowerment.
Despite some inevitably over the top graphics, it was a visually stunning film with a strong storyline and a stellar cast that included Chadwick Boseman, Michael B Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Forest Whitaker and Angela Basset.
Above all, it has, in spades, arguably cinema’s most important ingredient: originality.
Logan is not like other X Men. Subsequently, Logan is not like other X Men movies. A 15 certificate, James Mangold had the space to make Logan’s bone breaking, limb-detaching fights shockingly visceral. Then there’s the plot. Hugh Jackman’s Logan is old, broken and (spoiler alert) dying. Full of anger and regret at a life spent hurting people and being hurt in return, he is paying his penance, protecting Professor Xavier from himself and the world. When a little girl who might be his daughter arrives at his door, pursued by government agents, he sets out on a journey of redemption. Part Western, part road movie, part popcorn superhero flick, Logan is the opposite of a coming of age story. It’s a brilliantly realised, grown-up end to one of Marvel’s most compelling character arcs. And it’s definitely better than Hugo.