I would love to shrug off these lazy, poorly executed 'articles' as the work of corporate shills trying to mislead, misinform and degrade the artist/filmmaker hopefuls that comb through sites like NFS as they travel their long journey's to the silver screen... but it's much, much sadder than that. But for a moment, lets consider how funny it would be if Disney/Marvel MCU infiltrated the indie ranks, slowly feeding us the same old tired garbage that, "This is good cinema guys! Seriously! So drama! Much art!" All in the attempt to poison the minds of otherwise discerning, self-respecting, intelligent and unique voices clamoring to bring their vision to the world across cinemas the world over... so they can re-boot the next superhero we've paid, time and again, to see before.
No, the reality is that there is group of impassioned and vocal adults trying to convince us Martin Scorsese is the one that's wrong and out of touch with what 'cinema really is.'
A smarter man than myself pegged this whole situation very well. To paraphrase: "It's not the filmmakers / storytellers that are worse... it's the audience." And it's true. We've all heard the fast food vs. nutritious home-made meal analogy before and no amount of poorly expressed ideas to the contrary will convince serious, passionate and educated filmmakers that a McDonald's cheeseburger is fine dining (or good for you in large quantities).
To the men/women/them-children holding their adolescence in earnest, put away your happy meal and go eat some cine-getables before you get artistic diabetes.
Exactly -- it's not a big deal whatsoever. Actually, it's not 'a deal' at all. It's nothing. A non-issue.
If living in this day and age has taught me anything, it's that sharing a personal, dissenting opinion near a vocal minority will most certainly result in an overblown outcry of infantile proportions.
Why, just the other day someone made mention of their distaste for donair kebabs around me and my Donair Enthusiasts of Canada associates, local West Coast Chapter 231. Suffice it to say the man paid with his life for expressing his blasphemous views in our presence. But that's how the world works these days; conform or die.
**DEC, WCC231 for life**
Yikes... triggered editorial. The headline says it all.
A few alternative headlines:
"Master of cinema has measured critique of superhero blockbuster over-saturation."
"One of the best living directors calls for de-escalation of rampant fandom dominated box office."
"Martin Scorsese -- you know, the guy that made an indelible mark on the art form known as cinema -- calls out corporate Mickey Mouse Hollywood blockbusters for what they are: popcorn thrill rides. Fandom has collective aneurysm."
The funny thing is that Scorsese STILL gives respect to the immense talents involved in bringing such products to life and STILL attracts the wrath of countless MCU die-hard adults that can't reconcile the characters/worlds/stories they've grown up on as adolescents is actually, in fact, intended for adolescents. It's so damn sad. It's like those mates that can't let go of the fact pro-wrestling isn't actually wrestling, but highly monetized theatrics that BOOM and WOW a rampant audience that enjoys bombastic thrills with larger-than-life characters. There's absolutely no shame in that... as long as you can call it what it is without throwing an e-tantrum.
We've had enough cinematic pizza and burgers -- serve us up something else now, please.
Interesting post. I used to be OBSESSED with the age of my heroes when they made their first film. Imagine my dismay when, at 21 with the grand dream of being a Welles' like wunderkind, saw a fellow Canadian -- Xavier Dolan -- breakout in Cannes with his debut, "I Killed My Mother." My wunderkind dream died a fabulous death right then and there.
Regardless, the pressure and urgency that 'age driven filmmaking' creates can be a great tool for getting one's ass in gear. I made my first feature at 23, second at 26 and third at 31 (present day). Here's a few lessons learned:
Film 1: BEST decision ever. I was on the verge of quitting when it dawned on me... I never took a kick at the can and I was already thinking of quitting? Wow. Talk about warped expectations. With 7,500 CAD to my name I went all in and shot the damn thing. It premiered at a massive genre film fest and sold! Hooray.
Film 2: BEST mistake ever. After the lengthy process of finishing my first film -- as well as meeting 'working directors' on the festival circuit -- I was anxious to make my follow-up... a little too anxious. Adding another "0" I made another film that fell short of my debut (at least on a creative / critical level). Better production value and pro crew / actors aside, the film sold well but it was a blow to my process and where I felt I was heading. The mistakes were plenty and it set me on course to readjust my approach, collaborators and ultimately storytelling direction. Altogether, it was the best mistake that could have happened.
Film 3: 100% different experience. I almost don't want to elaborate too much as I'm still in post and don't want to jinx anything. The lessons learnt on my 2nd film were crucial in how Film 3 would shake down.
What's the point of my post? "Use age to push you into action. Realize the sooner you make a film, the sooner you'll make mistakes and the sooner you'll improve." I really do think that waiting until 'everything is right' is a recipe for death. Sure, my 2nd film may have had an undercooked script and a hasty production, but it overhauled my perspective on how to correct what could have been a costlier mistake on my 3rd film (a much higher budget.)
Make mistakes early (even if early means you're in your 40's / 50's / 60's, etc.) You're never too old to make your film.
That burn was...