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Roger Ebert wrote the first film review that director Martin Scorsese ever received—for 1967’s I Call First, later renamed Who’s That Knocking at My Door—creating a lasting bond that made him one of Scorsese’s most appreciative and perceptive commentators. Scorsese by Ebert offers the first record of America’s most respected film critic’s engagement with the works of America’s greatest living director, chronicling every single feature film in Scorsese’s considerable oeuvre, from his aforementioned debut to his 2008 release, the Rolling Stones documentary Shine a Light.
In the course of eleven interviews done over almost forty years, the book also includes Scorsese’s own insights on both his accomplishments and disappointments. Ebert has also written and included six new reconsiderations of the director’s less commented upon films, as well as a substantial introduction that provides a framework for understanding both Scorsese and his profound impact on American cinema.
“Given their career-long back-and-forth, this collection makes perfect sense. . . . In these reconsiderations, Ebert invites us into his thought processes, letting us see not just what he thinks, but how he forms his opinions. Ebert’s insights into Scorsese are terrific, but this book offers the bonus of further insights into Ebert himself.”—Time Out Chicago
“Ebert, film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times, is an unabashed fan of Scorsese, whom he considers ‘the most gifted director of his generation.’ . . . Of special note are interviews with Scorsese over a 25-year period, in which the director candidly discusses his body of work.”—Publishers Weekly
Ebert, film critic for the Chicago Sun-Times, is an unabashed fan of Scorsese, whom he considers the most gifted director of his generation. To prove it, he s compiled his reviews of every Scorsese film beginning with I Call First in 1967 to his latest, Shine a Light. Along the way, Ebert pays special tribute to five masterpieces, including Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and Mean Streets, which he calls one of the source points of modern movies. These three films in particular, Ebert argues, reflect Scorsese s ongoing preoccupation with sex and guilt, themes fueled by a Catholic upbringing and his childhood in New York City s Little Italy. Citing the director s strong collaboration with actor Robert De Niro and screenwriter Paul Schrader, Ebert says all three men seem fascinated by the lives of tortured, violent, guilt-ridden characters, usually men who cannot relate to women, such as Travis Bickle in Taxi Driver or Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull. Of special note are interviews with Scorsese over a 25-year period, in which the director candidly discusses his body of work.