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Francis Ford Coppola calls Marvel films 'despicable', James Gunn comes to defence again

Press Trust of India  |  Los Angeles 

Francis Ford Coppola has supported Martin Scorsese's criticism of Marvel Cinematic Universe films and filmmaker James Gunn again came to the rescue of the superhero movies.

According to reports, "The Godfather" director went a notch up when asked for his comments on the MCU films after Martin Scorsese had likened these movies to "theme parks" experience rather than true cinema.

Coppola agreed with "The Irishman" director, adding the films were "despicable".

"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," Coppola, who was in Lyon, France, to receive the Prix Lumiere for contributions to cinema, said.

Gunn, the director of MCU's "Guardians of the Galaxy" franchise, took to social media to again defend the genre, saying like Westerns and gangster films, not everyone will be able to appreciate the superhero films, "even some geniuses".

Aiming his comments at the two celebrated filmmakers, known as the pillars of gangster cinema, Gunn said superheroes are the "gangsters/cowboys/outer space adventurers" of the modern era.

"Many of our grandfathers thought all gangster movies were the same, often calling them 'despicable'. Some of our great grandfathers thought the same of westerns, and believed the films of John Ford, Sam Peckinpah, and Sergio Leone were all exactly the same. I remember a great uncle to whom I was raving about 'Star Wars'. He responded by saying, 'I saw that when it was called 2001, and, boy, was it boring!'" the director wrote on Instagram on Sunday.

"Superheroes are simply today's gangsters/cowboys/outer space adventurers. Some superhero films are awful, some are beautiful. Like Westerns and gangster movies (and before that, just MOVIES), not everyone will be able to appreciate them, even some geniuses. And that's okay," Gunn added.

Scorsese had said he "tried" to watch MCU movies, but had decided they are "not cinema".

Oscar winner Natalie Portman, who starred as scientist Jane Foster in "Thor" films, also weighed in on the controversy that erupted earlier this month, saying there is room for all types of cinema.

"I think there's room for all types of cinema. There's not one way to make art," she told The Hollywood Reporter.

Portman, who set to reprise her role when she returns to MCU for 2021's "Thor: Love and Thunder", defended the comic book adaptations, adding the films offered an escape from the drudgery of daily life.

"I think that Marvel films are so popular because they're really entertaining and people desire entertainment when they have their special time after work, after dealing with their hardships in real life," said Portman.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Mon, October 21 2019. 10:35 IST
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