Francis Ford Coppola says Marvel movies are ‘despicable’; defends Martin Scorsese

Scorsese previously compared Marvel movies to ‘theme parks’

Adam White
Sunday 20 October 2019 14:15
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Taika Waititi responds to Martin Scorsese's criticism of Marvel films

Francis Ford Coppola has defended Martin Scorsese’s criticism of Marvel superhero movies, calling them “despicable”.

Agence France-Presse reports that the famed filmmaker was speaking to journalists in Lyon, where he has been awarded the Prix Lumière at the Lumière Festival for his contribution to cinema, when he expressed support for Scorsese.

“When Martin Scorsese says that the Marvel pictures are not cinema, he’s right because we expect to learn something from cinema, we expect to gain something, some enlightenment, some knowledge, some inspiration,” he said.

“I don’t know that anyone gets anything out of seeing the same movie over and over again.”

He continued, “Martin was kind when he said it’s not cinema. He didn’t say it’s despicable, which I just say it is.”

In early October, Scorsese said that he had “tried” to watch movies from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but that he had decided they are “not cinema”.

“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,” he explained.

“It isn’t the cinema of human beings trying to convey emotional, psychological experiences to another human being.”

A number of Marvel actors and filmmakers have since criticised Scorsese’s opinion, with Samuel L Jackson stating it is “like saying Bugs Bunny ain’t funny. Films are films.”

Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn expressed sadness over Scorsese’s stance, tweeting: “Martin Scorsese is one of my five favourite living filmmakers. I was outraged when people picketed The Last Temptation of Christ without having seen the film. I’m saddened that he’s now judging my films in the same way.”

Appearing on The Howard Stern Show, Robert Downey Jr took a less outraged stance, stating: “I appreciate his opinion because I think it’s like anything, we need all of the perspectives so we can come to the centre and move on.”

Along with the Godfather trilogy, Coppola has directed films including Apocalypse Now, The Conversation and Bram Stoker’s Dracula.

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