Superhero movies have been existing for decades now. The attempts to adapt comic book characters have been present since the 1940s when Batman and Superman were adapted in their own film serials. Although Adam West played his campy Caped Crusader in 1966’s ‘Batman,’ Richard Donner’s ‘Superman,’ which was released in 1978, is considered a pioneer of the superhero genre since it started the first superhero movie franchise. Batman got his first movie franchise in the 1990s, and Spider-Man and X-Men followed in the early 2000s.
Although there’s been a lot of superhero movies by then, 2008 was considered a very important year for this genre since it released two important movies. Marvel’s ‘Iron Man’ was the first installment of the still and ever-growing Marvel Cinematic Universe, while Christopher Nolan’s ‘The Dark Knight’ was the first movie to join a billion-dollar club, and it’s still one of the most acclaimed superhero movies ever. Since then, superhero movies blossomed into kings of blockbusters, and the peak happened in 2019 when ‘Avengers: Endgame’ briefly became the highest-grossing movie of all time.
Martin Scorsese doesn’t hold back in expressing his disdain for superhero movies.
Although the superhero genre has been in a slight decline over the past few years, we’re getting more superhero content than ever, and the discussions about superhero fatigue have never been more present than now. Although the genre still enjoys large popularity among the general audience, it’s not a secret that elite filmmakers such as Francis Ford Coppola, Woody Allen, and Martin Scorsese weren’t so enthusiastic about superhero movies becoming mainstream.
Scorsese shared his opinions years ago when he said that superhero movies aren’t cinema, and recently, he made an even more extensive rant, which you can read below.
“The danger there is what it’s doing to our culture. Because there are going to be generations now that think movies are only those [blockbuster movies]. They already think that, 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.
I do think that the manufactured content isn’t really cinema. 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?”Martin Scorsese for GQ
Martin Scorsese is one of the best and most acclaimed directors that ever walked Hollywood. He made many cinematic masterpieces, such as ‘Taxi Driver,’ ‘Raging Bull,’ ‘Goodfellas,’ Casino, ‘The Aviator,’ ‘Shutter Island’ ‘The Departed,’ ‘The Wolf of Wall Street,’ and the list goes on and on.
His next movie, ‘Killers of the Flower Moon,’ starring Leonardo DiCaprio, is set to be released on October 20 worldwide. The movie premiered at Cannes Film Festival last May, where it received widespread acclaim from critics.
What are your thoughts on this topic? Do you agree with Scorsese, or do you think maybe he’s exaggerating now?