Aaaahhh! Special effects in movies! Can we live without them? Personally, I think that there are some of them which I absolutely adore, and find that the movie would certainly not have had the same impact if it did not have them.
But there are exceptions, of course. There are some which I am certainly not fond of.
Martin Scorsese, the Oscar-winning filmmaker we all know, gave an interview to Empire in October 2019. He was promoting his new movie, The Irishman, starring Al Pacino and Robert de Niro. Remember them?
The last time we saw them together, was in heat, a 1995 film directed by Michael Mann. You will be able to watch The Irishman on Netflix as from November 27th, 2019. Personally, I am very excited! But moving on swiftly back to the topic.
Ok, so, while chatting, Martin shared his view on the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Let’s talk about that!
Martin Scorsese and Marvel Movies
To sum up, Martin Scorsese thinks that movie theaters have become amusement parks. He tried to watch MCU films, ‘but that’s 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‘.
In his opinion, ‘it isn’t the cinema of human beings trying to convey emotional, psychological experiences to another human being‘. My understanding of that statement is that he is opposing narrative films to special effects movies because it no longer allows the viewer or cinema goer to bond or empathise with the characters on screen.
According to Francis Ford Coppola, marvel movies are ‘despicable‘. Well, what is cinema, then, and should we – as an audience – really be told what we should like and what we should not like, just because a “name” has told us so ?
What is Cinema?
It is what you want it to be, if you ask me. It is the art of moving images. It is a visual medium that tells stories and exposes reality as seen by the filmmaker. Scriptwriting, set design and editing are the norm.
In 2019, motion picture can be defined as the art of colorful moving images enhanced by voices, sounds and music, still telling stories, still entertaining and still selling popcorn, which raises the question: is cinema an art or a business?
Well, my answer will sound very consensual, I’m afraid. Filmmaking is an artistic expression and a huge business. And there is nothing wrong with that. All tastes are in nature. Your cup of tea might be indie movies, horror movies, spoofs and/or superhero movies. There has to be every genre for everybody.
In the process, everybody hopes for the best, from the producer who might earn millions of dollar for each movie produced, to the gaffer who might be fired any minute. Whether it expresses an artistic view or not, cinema is an industry, like some hospitals are. It is what it is.
Special Effects in Movies: The Art of Chroma Keying
There is nothing wrong with discovering a bit of science behind superheroes when you watch a Marvel movie. Between superhero movies and superhero comic books, I prefer the latter. In saying this, in terms of superheroes, I prefer anti-heroes like Transmetropolitan or Preacher.
Special effects in movies do not bother me, as long as there is a scenario. A succession of explosions is boring. Some special effects are truly spectacular, others are nonsense.
In any case, I will always be amazed at how actors and actresses manage to act in front of a green screen. What am I talking about? About chroma key compositing, which is the technique of layering 2 images based on color hues.
After Martin Scorsese, Friends actress Jennifer Aniston, said in an interview with Variety, that she was not interested in living in a green screen. I get it, but, as an actor and as an actress, something tells me that it must be complicated to look natural when acting in front or behind or next to a green screen.
It seems very difficult to me and I would never think of expressing any contempt towards such a performance. Yes, to me, it is a performance.
My Opinion on Superhero Movies
I adored the Iron Man trilogy. I loved Deadpool, but I was very disappointed in Deadpool 2. I dread Deadpool 3. MCU now wants to produce 4 to 5 films per year. Well, quality matters to me.
Between the movies and the TV series, I’m afraid to lose the plot, I confess. But what matters most to me is that no one can tell me what cinema is. The feelings of a well-known director is not the law. He is entitled to his opinion and I am glad he expressed it. I am entitled to mine.
Globally, I am not a huge fan of superhero movies. They disappoint me 90% of the time. I prefer movies like The Station Agent, or Japanese Story. But, as I said, I absolutely adored the 3 episodes of Iron Man. I am a huge admirer of Jon Favreau and Robert Downey Jr.
On the other hand, it is a pleasure to see my nephew – his name is Antonin – watch every movie of the Star wars franchise and then, in front of an ice cream, to listen to him telling me about adventures he has read on the matter, or that he has experienced through video games.
Those blockbusters can act as a dream: the viewer escapes from reality and enters a world where, in terms of magic and science-fiction, everything is possible. It lasts 2 hours and then things go back to normal. This is also what we need in life. Entertainment! And if people can make millions out of this, good for them!
Upcoming Superhero Movies
In terms of the MCU, you can read all about it here. In terms of the DC universe, let’s take a closer look. Here is a list, that still needs to be confirmed. Warning: it is endless!
- Birds of Prey
- Wonder Woman 1984
- The Batman
- The Suicide Squad 2
- Aquaman 2
- Untitled Black Adam movie
- The Trench, a spinoff of Aquaman
- The Flash
- Shazam! 2
- Green Lantern Corps
- New Gods
- Untitled Jared Leto Joker movie
- Untitled Joker/Harley Quinn movie
- Justice League Dark
- Gotham City Sirens
- Blue Beetle
- Plastic Man
- Untitled Man of Steel sequel
- Untitled Deathstroke movie
- Untitled Lobo movie
Phew! That’s a lot! I think in terms of superhero movies, we are sorted for decades! What do you think of that? The Comment s section below is all yours!