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Martin Scorsese (1942 - )
Related: American cinema - director
Films: Taxi Driver (1976) - After Hours (1985)
Martin Scorsese (born November 17, 1942 in Queens, New York, USA) is an American film director.
Critics and film scholars have called him the "greatest living American director," and several of his movies occupy spots on the American Film Institute's list of "greatest movies" and the Internet Movie Database's list of the "top 250 movies". Although he has much admiration and one of the most recognizable names in the film industry, he has never won an Academy Award.
Scorsese originally planned to become a priest, and many of his movies bear the stamp of Catholic upbringing. He was bitten by the movie bug at a young age, and has admitted to being "obsessed" with movies, an obsession apparent in the three hour and 45 minute long 1995 documentary film A Personal Journey with Martin Scorsese Through American Movies. A sickly child, he spent a lot of time recovering at home, watching the goings-on in the streets from his upstairs bedroom window. A great deal of his childhood was spent in movie theaters, and he resolved to become a filmmaker when he grew older. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Scorsese [Mar 2005]
- A Personal Journey With Martin Scorsese Through American Movies (1995) - Michael Henry Wilson, Martin Scorsese [Amazon US]
"I can only talk about what has moved me or intrigued me," says filmmaker Martin Scorsese (Raging Bull) at the beginning of this four-hour documentary about his passion for U.S. cinema. "I can't really be objective here." Hallelujah! A Personal Journey with Martin Scorsese Through American Movies is the perfect antidote to the forced and artificial doctrine of the American Film Institute's so-called 100 best films. The AFI's English cousin, the British Film Institute, did a brilliant thing in enlisting Scorsese--probably the most famous student of cinema in the U.S.--to open up and speak at length for this project about the history of artistic survival among Hollywood directors. Working with cowriter and codirector Michael Henry Wilson, Scorsese takes a highly intuitive and heartfelt approach in describing how a number of filmmakers--some famous and some forgotten--carefully layered their visions into their work, often against the great resistance or eccentric whims of powerful producers. Film clips are plentiful, but they are also more than window dressing for nostalgia buffs. For instance, it's not unusual for Scorsese to return repeatedly to the same film (such as Vincente Minnelli's The Bad and the Beautiful) in order to make a series of connecting, deepening points. In the end, this work is truly one of Scorsese's most direct bridges to his imagination and personality, and it has the sort of restorative properties that can make a cinephile wearied by today's junk culture fall in love with movies again. A companion book is also available. --Tom Keogh for Amazon.com
- Boxcar Bertha (1972) - Martin Scorsese DVD version at amazon is edited to remove nudity.
Like similar Roger Corman productions from this period ('Bloody Mama', 'Dillinger', 'Big Bad Mama') it is a Depression era look at flamboyant criminals. An exploitation movie for sure, but exploitation with style and class. Barbara Hershey (who would reunite with Scorsese in seriously underrated 'The Last Temptation Of Christ') plays the title role, but the real star of the movie is her then real life partner David Carradine ('Kung Fu', 'Death Race 2000'), who gives a strong, charismatic performance. The supporting cast includes blaxploitation legend Bernie Casey ('Cleopatra Jones',etc.), Carradine's veteran character actor father John, and Scorsese/Ferrara regular Victor Argo ('Taxi Driver', 'King Of New York'). - infofreak for imdb.com
- The King of Comedy (1983) - Martin Scorsese [Amazon.com]
The King of Comedy, which flopped at the box office, is actually a gem waiting to be rediscovered. Like A Face in the Crowd (a not-so-distant cousin to this film), Network, and The Truman Show, its target is show business--specifically the burning desire to become famous or be near the famous, no matter what. Robert De Niro plays the emotionally unstable, horrendously untalented Rupert Pupkin, a wannabe Vegas-style comedian. His fantasies are egged on by Marsha, a talk-show groupie (brilliantly played by Sandra Bernhard) who hatches a devious, sure-to-backfire plan. Jerry Lewis is terrific in the straight role as the Johnny Carson-like talk-show host Jerry Langford. De Niro's performance as the obsessive Pupkin is among his finest (which is saying a lot) and he never tries to make the character likable in any way. Because there's no hero and no one to root for, and because at times the film insists we get a little too close and personal with Pupkin, some will be put off. Yet it's one of Scorsese's most original and fascinating films, giving viewers much to consider on the subject of celebrity. Its inevitable climax is clever and quietly horrific. --Christopher J. Jarmick for amazon.com
- Goodfellas (1990) - Martin Scorsese [1 DVD, Amazon US]
Martin Scorsese's 1990 masterpiece GoodFellas immortalizes the hilarious, horrifying life of actual gangster Henry Hill (Ray Liotta), from his teen years on the streets of New York to his anonymous exile under the Witness Protection Program. The director's kinetic style is perfect for recounting Hill's ruthless rise to power in the 1950s as well as his drugged-out fall in the late 1970s; in fact, no one has ever rendered the mental dislocation of cocaine better than Scorsese. Scorsese uses period music perfectly, not just to summon a particular time but to set a precise mood. GoodFellas is at least as good as The Godfather without being in the least derivative of it. Joe Pesci's psycho improvisation of Mobster Tommy DeVito ignited Pesci as a star, Lorraine Bracco scores the performance of her life as the love of Hill's life, and every supporting role, from Paul Sorvino to Robert De Niro, is a miracle. -- amazon editorial
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