Martin Scorsese is known as a prolific filmmaker, having produced massively successful movies for decades. Scorsese's work has pierced the pop culture landscape forever, and he's pretty much the king of gangster movies. The filmmaker has had countless hits including Taxi Driver, The Departed, The Wolf of Wall Street, and Gangs of New York. His latest work is perhaps his most ambitious. The Irishman spans decades of time and utilizes de-aging technology for the cast, and is currently streaming on Netflix. Although it looks like that might be Scorsese's final outing as a director.
The Irishman has been dominating the news cycle for a number of months, dating back to before its release on Netflix. Martin Scorsese went viral for not considering superhero movies "cinema", before the same time his 209-minute epic became available to stream. Now that The Irishman has been released and will attempt to get big nominations this coming Awards Season, Scorsese has opened up about the possibility of retiring. As he put it,
Obviously, we have been discussing this a lot, that theatres have been commandeered by superhero films – you know, just people flying around and banging and crashing, which is fine if you want to see it. It’s just that there’s no room for another kind of picture. I don’t know how many more I can make – maybe this is it. The last one. So the idea was to at least get it made and maybe show it for one day at the NFT, maybe one day at the Cinémathèque in Paris. I’m not kidding.
Do you hear that sound? It's cinephiles across the world weeping. Martin Scorsese has brought countless quality movies to theaters during his tenure as a director. But the 77 year-old filmmaker isn't sure if he has any more films inside of him. The Irishman could end up being his last.
Martin Scorsese's comments to The Guardian might be a bummer for movie fans, but you can't blame him for thinking about putting his feet up. Scorsese has directed a whopping 25 movies over the years, and The Irishman was no doubt an especially grueling process. The crime drama was a long time coming, with the filmmaker beginning work on it years ago. And now it's finally available for Netflix subscribers all over the world.
The Irishman is told on a scale that is massive, even for Martin Scorsese's standards. The story begins in the 1950s, and shows Robert De Niro's Frank Sheeran ascending in the crime world across the decades. He assembled a stunning cast to bring the story to life, with some of the actors being de-aged to tell the origin of their character. Joining De Niro are Joe Pesci, Al Pacino, Ray Romano, Bobby Cannavale, Anna Paquin and Jesse Plemons.
The Irishman is largely being considered a masterpiece, but Martin Scorsese has been working on it for a long time. And he wasn't sure exactly how it was going to go down. The filmmaker explained this process during his conversation with The Guardian, saying:
My main concern was that it would be OK for the actors, that the Academy would accept it. Not for me, not for the film. I know that I’m at the end of a long, long ride. The main thing is to get the film made and to embrace this new world of how these pictures are going to be seen.
Martin Scorsese put his all into The Irishman, releasing it onto the world after a lengthy development, filming, and editing process. And given just how epic of a story the movie tells, it stands to reason that Scorsese might be flirting with the idea of retirement. Although he hasn't actually confirmed anything.
You can stream Martin Scorsese's The Irishman on Netflix now. In the meantime, check out our 2020 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.