Talking to Schickel about Talking to Scorsese

Conversations-with-directors books can go one of two ways: Either the directors want to analyze their work, or they don’t. Those who do either obscure the films with trivial esoterica or — as is the case with Martin Scorsese, in Richard Schickel’s new book, Conversations With Scorsese — illuminate their choices with a pragmatic instinct verging on the intimate, as though they were discussing not shots and lenses but their own biography.

Click here to read my L.A. Weekly interview with Schickel about his interview with Scorsese.


3 responses to “Talking to Schickel about Talking to Scorsese

  1. Decades have passed, but I never forgot Scorsese on PBS. They told him that he knows everything about movies. He said, “Movies?! No — life! Why are you talking to me if it’s only movies? This is PHILOSOPHY!”
    He dreamed of being a Bernard Shaw, a go-to-guy for the Big Questions. It didn’t happen.
    It’s in my mind, Sammy, every time you tell Nightline or Maureen Dowd that movies should change how we see the world.
    Bio instead of shots & lenses? I’ll buy that book.

    • Yes, bio. Early childhood especially. It’s less intimate than illuminating, but what emerges is a sense that little Marty, Queens Marty, is pivotal. Schickel helps connect the dots.

  2. Of course, I don’t like shots & lenses. You know that I like “theatrical”, not cinematic — bc I like dialogue.
    Well, I saw your FB link to Sidney Lumet. Another memory: just like Scorsese once said he’s “philosophy”, Lumet once said, “Film?” Oh, I call it “movies”. I don’t like film. And that OTHER word — cinema– I can’t even say.

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