Martin Scorsese Says "Fight Back" Against CBM Culture... By Supporting TDK Trilogy Director Christopher Nolan

Martin Scorsese Says "Fight Back" Against CBM Culture... By Supporting TDK Trilogy Director Christopher Nolan Martin Scorsese Says "Fight Back" Against CBM Culture... By Supporting TDK Trilogy Director Christopher Nolan

Legendary director Martin Scorsese has urged cinemagoers to "fight back" against comic book movie culture by showing support for filmmakers like Christopher Nolan...

By MarkCassidy - Sep 25, 2023 10:09 AM EST
Filed Under: The Dark Knight

Martin Scorsese has never been shy about expressing his negative opinion on comic book movies (more specifically, how the likes of Marvel Studios' output dominates the marketplace), and the legendary director of Goodfellas, The Irishman and Taxi Driver has now taken another dig at the "omnipresence" of CBM and franchise culture.

In a new GQ profile, Scorsese was asked about his previous comments on the subject, and made it clear that he believes comic book films (and huge studio blockbusters in general) may ultimately contribute to smaller, independent and art house movies being erased from the cinematic landscape completely.

“The danger there is what it’s doing to our culture,” he said. “Because there are going to be generations now that think movies are only those — that’s what movies are.”

“They already think that,” he continued. “Which means that we have to then fight back stronger. And it’s got to come from the grassroots level. It’s gotta come from the filmmakers themselves. And you’ll have, you know, the Safdie brothers, and you’ll have Chris Nolan, you know what I mean? And hit ’em from all sides. Hit ’em from all sides, and don’t give up. Let’s see what you got. Go out there and do it. Go reinvent. Don’t complain about it. But it’s true, because we’ve got to save cinema.”

While it's easy enough to understand where Scorsese is coming from (to some extent, at least), the irony of asking cinemagoers to "fight back" against comic book movie culture by showing support for the director of the one of the most iconic superhero movie trilogies of all time has not been lost on many, including fellow director Scott Derrickson.

Of course, Nolan has also helmed plenty of non-comic book-based/genre fare, but surely the massive success of his recent film, Oppenheimer, only proves that audiences will still show up for non-traditional "blockbusters" in a (supposedly) comic book movie dominated marketplace.

Scorsese went on to speak about the streaming-era definition of content, as opposed to "actual cinema."

“I do think that the manufactured content isn’t really cinema,” he said, adding, “It’s almost like AI making a film. And that doesn’t mean that you don’t have incredible directors and special effects people doing beautiful artwork. But what does it mean? What do these films, what will it give you? Aside from a kind of consummation of something and then eliminating it from your mind, your whole body, you know? So what is it giving you?”

What do you make of Scorsese's comments? Be sure to share your thoughts in the usual place.

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AllsGood - 9/25/2023, 10:13 AM
Martin Scorsese Says, "Fight Back" Against CBM Culture.

Origame - 9/25/2023, 10:31 AM
@AllsGood - ...if anything he's won before saying this. Cbm has been on a massive decline. To the point the big mcu set up of their next big villain flopped.
AllsGood - 9/25/2023, 10:34 AM
@Origame - Martin Scorsese "because we’ve got to save Cinema" Cinema is just an opinion all audiences will have a different Opinion on what Cinema is. Scorsese taste are not mine or many movie goers.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 10:37 AM
@AllsGood - well, one thing I'd say is it should be open to as many genres as possible. But the cbm boom meant basically every studio was trying to make their own cinematic universe full of superheroes.

They even tried to make Dracula and the mummy into superheroes.

Only real fault with the idea was that it's pointless. It was inevitable cbm would go the way of westerns and horror movies. Genres get popular and lose their luster all the time.
AllsGood - 9/25/2023, 10:38 AM
@Origame - Your comment "Cbm has been on a massive decline: that complete lie and made up nothing supports your comment. Comic Book Movies are here to stay that's the truth.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 10:42 AM
@AllsGood - the box office supports this. If they weren't in the decline, ant man 3 should've been the most successful film of the year just with the fact the villain was the Thanos of the new mcu saga. Yet it didn't even make as much as the previous ant man movies (and it's not like ant man was a particularly huge box office draw to begin with). And the only post endgame movie to break a billion was with help from sony's characters. And that's not even getting into the shows which are hemorrhaging money for disney.
AllsGood - 9/25/2023, 10:50 AM
@Origame -
Origame - 9/25/2023, 10:59 AM
@AllsGood - ...where's the lie? Outside of no way home, what mcu movie broke a billion? If ant man 3 wasn't a bomb that did worse than the other ant man movies, what did it make? And how can you justify the shows when even disney is saying they're moving away from them?
AllsGood - 9/25/2023, 11:10 AM
@Origame - Name ONE movie of Martin Scorsese movies that got even close to 1 billion? All of Scorsese movies made very little at the box office.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 11:12 AM
@AllsGood - ...Scorsese doesn't make blockbusters. The budgets usually don't exceed $100 mil. Let alone the $250 mil of more recent mcu movies.
AllsGood - 9/25/2023, 11:20 AM
@Origame - So how is Martin Scorsese going to Save Cinema than? Looks like he wants to bankrupt movie theaters and movie studios.
mastakilla39 - 9/25/2023, 11:29 AM
@AllsGood - How Scorsese lose? His movies are going to be studied in college and held in prestige forever while most of these CBMs are just going to be in reboot hell until the public loses interest. CBMs are manufactured blockbusters made for people who want mindless roller coaster fun or want to be spoon fed simple stories with great vfx. There's nothing wrong with that at all as I enjoy both, but like Scorsese says we shouldn't let CBMs be the only thing cinemas have to offer future filmmakers and moviegoers are there is so much more.

I agree he's lost the financial battle with these studio blockbusters but in no way has he lost in cinema relevancy.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 11:36 AM
@AllsGood - you think it's bankrupting studios to spend more money on projects that can't make back its money?
RedFury - 9/25/2023, 11:41 AM
@Origame - I wouldn't fully disagree with you because the box office numbers do tell a story. But I think it's a little soon to assume this trend will continue. It could just be an adjustment phase where the studios realize going all in like they are isn't working in their favor as per Bob Iger's comments. So now they're adjusting their approach and it could see the rise of box office numbers again if they focus on quality rather than quantity.

There's certainly room for both CBM's and indie films. It just takes the studio executives to stop choosing one over the other. They just want such huge returns that they inevitably will go with more CBMs, or whatever the next giant movie trend is. People like Scorsese will forever be fighting an uphill battle because the times of small cinema being king are sadly in the past. As soon as these huge blockbusters started making billions, it sealed their fate.

Sometimes we just can't go back.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 12:16 PM
@RedFury - outside of shows its the same output they've been doing.
JimMoriarty - 9/25/2023, 12:35 PM
@Origame - I really like you, you have such valid points in OTHER posts. lost. Red fury owned that ass this time. Just except a loss.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 12:39 PM
@JimMoriarty - ...yeah, I should totally except this loss 🤣

Dude, red fury "owning" my a$$ started off with him admitting I had some valid points.

But how did I lose when his whole point is about quantity when the mcu phase 4 was just as long as the previous phases, not counting shows (since this is a discussion of cinema)?
CorndogBurglar - 9/25/2023, 12:48 PM
@RedFury - This is a very reasonable take on things, I think.

Disney got comfortable. They started taking for granted that anything they put out in the MCU will earn them hundreds of millions in profits. And that was probably true before Infinity War and Endgame. But they too much money into these side characters and these shows have just been abysmal with the exception of a fee. But they thought it wouldn't matter because it has the MCU logo.

They're learning a hard lesson right now and only time will tell if they can bounce back from it. They've got the X-Men in their back pocket. If they change what they are currently doing and take the right approach with X-Men, and stop flooding the market with characters the general audience doesn't care about, then they very well could turn it around.

But the problem now is they already fumbled the ball. So now it's going to take a lot of work to earn back the fans good will.
RedFury - 9/25/2023, 1:21 PM
@CorndogBurglar - yeah I'd have to agree with you as well. Especially when it comes to them thinking they were invincible. The armor was thick, but not impenetrable.

Here's hoping they take this as a learning moment and get back to what made the MCU the powerhouse it was. There's still alot of gold to mine, they just need to use a smarter approach to find it.

I think the audience will be easy enough to win back; just as long as they start hitting some consecutive home runs again. My fingers are crossed that Deadpool 3 turns out to be the ride I'm hoping it is. If that's a success it'll do a ton for the MCU trust.
RedFury - 9/25/2023, 1:31 PM
@Origame - I'm certainly not trying to own anyone here haha. Just giving my perspective is all.

And I guess I would loop the streaming MCU in with the audience fatigue which I would assume is effecting the films box office numbers. Because you're right, the output is pretty much the same on te big screen. But I think you'd agree that the TV shows are probably dragging the film side of things down, seeing as they haven't really found much success, and have sort of been poisoning the MCU legacy for some. Add in the lukewarm reception of the films as of late and we've got ourselves a ship taking on water. But I still think there is time for them to bail out the water and fix the hull. (Excuse my analogies I'm on some sort of weird analogy kick today haha.)
Origame - 9/25/2023, 1:55 PM
@RedFury - I get that. Don't let Sherlock Holmes villains confuse my position 🤣

But anyway, while I get the shows potentially factoring in, you have to get most will choose one or the other. And movie wise it's on par with the previous film run, as opposed to phase 3 which had 11 films.

I do agree there's a quality problem as well but with how regularly films have been pumped out it's basically inevitable they'd run out of ways to keep people invested.
RedFury - 9/25/2023, 2:17 PM
@Origame - lol

yeah the quality and quantity of the films (even though I don't have as big a problem with them as most) is surely the reason for the dwindling numbers. I'd guess that there's a larger majority that only sees the films, compared to the ones that watch both the films and shows. I'd relegate the shows to the major fan base over the casual type. But I think because of how loud social media is these days, the television side of things is poisoning the well without people even having to have watched the shows.

I just hope that they take this opportunity to refocus themselves and put out quality content more consistently again. I truly believe if they right the course, we won't have to watch our beloved CBM genre go the way of westerns. I'd be sad if it did, because there's still so much potential.
Origame - 9/25/2023, 2:41 PM
@RedFury - yes, I do believe that's what they need to do.

But you also have to accept the fact it might not turn around. Cbm might just not be as interesting to people anymore. Westerns didn't die purely because of low quality. But because people were tired of the repetition of the stories.

All genres die. It's just inevitable. We just have to admire the great run it had and the understanding we're still gonna get content. They're still making westerns and horror movies after all, and at times they can still prove to be successful.
RedFury - 9/25/2023, 3:01 PM
@Origame - I refuse to accept that fact and shall live in denial! Lol. It's certainly an inevitably that we should prepare for. But fingers cross management gets their shit together and it pushes that inevitability down the road a bit.

Honestly I'd be a bit disappointed if we went back to singular super hero films. While I won't deny the positive aspects of that, I would certainly miss the connectivity that something like the MCU creates. So here's hoping it can go on existing. But if it does go the way of the westerns where they pop up every now and again with a quality entry, I'll be happy with what we get if it at least still partially exists.
RockBottom - 9/25/2023, 10:14 AM
Even though it is technically a comic book movie….but ok. TEAM NOLAN! 🤷‍♂️
whatevtrev - 9/25/2023, 10:18 AM
Scorsese's a great director and I like most of the films of his that I've seen but dude... shut up
Urubrodi - 9/25/2023, 10:19 AM
That's petty, it's not like there is someone forcing people to watch CBMs or studios to make them. Clearly these types of movies are popular amongst the general public, simple as that. Make good movies that attract people and they will come. If you have a better product, then make sure to market it well ans sell it, the people will buy it. It's not like CBMs are the only type of movies that are successful.
Urubrodi - 9/25/2023, 10:20 AM
@Urubrodi - Plus considering that the overall quality of CBMs has been dropping lately, maybe it's time for him and other directors to act instead of just complain.
bobevanz - 9/25/2023, 10:23 AM
@Urubrodi - you're saying he should make a cbm? Lol CBM movies are like popcorn movies thar come out year round instead of just the summer. They're mindless fun 90% of the time, you can't argue that.
Urubrodi - 9/25/2023, 10:29 AM
@bobevanz - Nope, I clearly didn't say that, it's like you never really bother reading someone's comments and midlessly just reply something random. But to answer your comment, if he wants more people to watch his movies then he should make something that will interest the public more than CBMs, it's really that simple. Gangsters movies have never been the most popular genre out there, even though it has its public, and that's what he's most known for.
mastakilla39 - 9/25/2023, 12:14 PM
@Urubrodi - Scoreses still makes good and interesting films, problem is no one is willing to pay to watch them in cinema anymore because of shitty hollywood habits and mandates. Studios are only promoting and spending big marketing campaigns on CBMS or blockbusters so thats the only thing the majority of moviegoers will see being advertised as a "movie-going experience". He's correct, right now there's already a disproportionate economic effect in box office returns for other genre movies all underperforming except for CBM like films in the past 10 years. the psychological effect can already be seen on consumers who now only pay to see the most expensive film thats just mediocre.

When people think the only thing cinema has to offer are mediocre expensive films and all the experiences are the same, they don't return which is hurting cinemas more now than the past.
Urubrodi - 9/26/2023, 10:22 AM
@mastakilla39 - I like some of his movies, just disagree with his views. Studios spend so much marketing on CBMs cause they are a proven and tested form of income for them. Certain genres sell more, that has always been the case. Scorceses' movies could use some better marketing but I'm pretty sure that all the marketing in the world wouldn't make a movie of his reach the same level of success as your average CBM. There needs to be a better balance I agree with that, but that balance will never be in his favor.
MarvelousMarty - 9/25/2023, 10:21 AM
I was talking to a film producer this weekend. We both agreed Martin Scorsese was a tad over rated. Sure, Goodfellas is a classic, and he has done some really good stuff but try watching Taxi Driver all the way through, it's tough. Mean Streats is an awful film. He's done a hell of a lot of bad to mediocre stuff. That being said, he's probably right about CBM's but he isn't gonna save us from them.
bobevanz - 9/25/2023, 10:21 AM
If you feel attacked, he's talking about you lol. Hollywood needs more “Because there are going to be generations now that think movies are only those – that’s what movies are. They already think that.”
"You can only remake BATMAN, SUPERMAN, and STAR WARS so many times before audiences get bored and their eyes glaze over. Franchise fatigue is a real thing. Hollywood needs to start making mid-budget movies again—original dramas, rom coms, suspense thrillers, pot-boilers. Stuff that doesn’t involve mutants, superpowers, and zombies"
bobevanz - 9/25/2023, 10:25 AM
This is just like the end of the 60's where movie budgets were so inflated and they were basically going the safe route with book adaptations. Luckily the 70's saved the movie industry and started a glorious Renaissance. We're right there again. Plus the strikes will make sure Hollywood goes full Indie once again.
nibs - 9/25/2023, 10:25 AM
people that get mad at what scorsese says are telling on themselves and it is very funny
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