Scorsese's The Age of Innocence (1993).

David Stratton's retrospective program at this year's Sydney Film Festival (June 8-19) will present ten films directed by Martin Scorsese.

The films will screen initially in Melbourne at ACMI (May 27-June 12) to coincide with ACMI’s exhibition Scorsese.  

All ten films – Mean Streets (1973), Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974), Taxi Driver (1976), New York, New York (1977), Raging Bull (1980), The King Of Comedy (1982), Goodfellas (1990), The Age of Innocence (1993), Casino (1995), The Aviator (2004) – will also screen at the NFSA in Canberra (July 1-23) after showing at SFF.

“Scorsese talks in a rapid-fire style as though he doesn’t have enough time to describe everything he knows", Stratton said.

"He’s like a character in a 1930s movie. His films are passionate too. His best are explosive in their impact, crammed with information and detail. On the one hand, his Catholic upbringing leads him to tackle religious subjects (The Last Temptation of Christ, Kundun) while the Saturday matinee kid in him revels in the trashy gore of his gangster films.”

SFF director Nashen Moodley said: “Essential Scorsese: Selected by David Stratton, brings to the Festival for the second year one of Australia’s great masters of film criticism to curate a selection of films by one of his favourite living directors".  

"Scorsese is widely considered one of the most important directors of all time. His ground-breaking films and gritty, meticulous filmmaking style are essential viewing for all film fans.”

The retrospective unveiling has provoked more than a few grumbles online.

The widespread availability of Scorsese's films certainly makes a retrospective of his work seem like a rather safe, and hardly necessary, bet on the part of SFF, especially when a director whose work is less easy to access might have been highlighted.

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