Francis Ford Coppola is one of the most legendary directors in cinematic history, so his opinion tends to hold some weight. That’s why it was such a huge blow to hear that he referred to the movies in the Marvel cinematic universe as “despicable” this week.
He was backing up his fellow director Martin Scorcese. Earlier this month, Scorcese claimed that Marvel movies were more like theme parks than true cinema, regardless of how well made they are and how much money goes into them. Coppola not only agreed, he took it one step further.
Coppola really doesn’t like Marvel, I guess. Speaking to reporters at the Prix Lumiere in Lyon, Coppola said, “When Martin Scorsese says that the Marvel pictures are not cinema, he’s right because we expect to learn something from cinema, we expect to gain something, some enlightenment, some knowledge, some inspiration. I don’t know that anyone gets anything out of seeing the same movie over and over again Martin was kind when he said it’s not cinema. He didn’t say it’s despicable, which I just say it is.”
It’s a bit of a lame attitude, don’t you think? I get that directors like Coppola and Scorcese have made some massive movies, but I wouldn’t necessarily say The Godfather is any more of a deep meditation on the human condition than, say, Black Panther. Just because Marvel pulls in supernatural elements doesn’t make it any less respectable.
These attitudes reinforce elitism in the industry. The idea that art has to be elitist to be any good is absolutely ridiculous. It’s an attitude 16-year-old hipsters would have, bragging about knowing a band no one else has ever heard of like it gives them extra street cred. Mass appeal doesn’t belittle artistic achievement, so these old fuddy-duddies need to can up. I don’t personally like Marvel movies, but I don’t think there’s an issue that many people do.
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