As any film professional would tell you, an accurate portrait of the current film market is pretty much required in order to survive its various pitfalls. Just as in any other business endeavor, knowing what the competition is up to can give the right person the upper hand. Though there are some that manage to not only survive, but also thrive in their respective markets by marching to the beat of their own drummer. Martin Scorsese is one such person, and he confirmed it when he admitted that he doesn't really watch any modern films, simply because he feels a lot of them are merely commercial products.
There's over saturation. particularly in our world as it is now, and nothing really does have a meaning. Images, for example, are everywhere. Cinema used to be in a building and even on television, you'd see a film or whatever. I must say a lot of the films that I'm aware of and I don't see that many new ones over the past two or three years, I stopped because the images don't mean anything.
Now it's easy to interpret that statement as nothing more than "old man Scorsese" talking about how "they don't make 'em like they used to." On the surface, you'd be right, as this is a reaction that even the Silence director himself admits has built up as time as gone on. However, considering the man's resume, as well as his personal style of movie-making, you can see how someone like Martin Scorsese would think of most blockbuster films as more of an exercise in action and/or product placement than actual artistic integrity. Ultimately, Scorsese's argument that films are more devoid of meaning now than they ever have been almost feels like a permutation of the "art versus commerce" debate that's been waged ever since the beginning of cinema.
While Martin Scorsese may claim not to watch a lot of the films that are out there today, the man is obviously still paying attention to the film scene in some capacities. With many producing credits, and even just his personal support attached to films like Gommorah or The Grandmaster, Scorsese is still out there propping up films he truly feels deserve the effort. Without his efforts, films like those may not have gotten the attention they did, which really makes it look like he's not so much ignoring everything that comes out of the modern world of cinema, but rather that his tastes are as singular in his viewing habits as they are in his film-making techniques.
If there's anyone that possesses a strong opinion of how the film business has changed, for better or worse, it's certainly a film-maker. Martin Scorsese's remarks aren't all that surprising when you look at them from a certain angle, but it is interesting to try and guess which films he values over others. Something tells us that he isn't exactly a Marvel Cinematic Universe die-hard, so if you were hoping he'd direct a Goodfellas / The King of Comedy inspired version of Howard The Duck, it doesn't look like you'll be getting that wish anytime soon.
Silence has already screened for critics, and will make its theatrical debut on December 23rd.