Scoring Scorsese (and Other Work)


Inspired by how much I loved the chicanery in The Wolf of Wall Street, I recently put together a Martin Scorsese scatterplot/infograph for It details his box office dollars (adjusted to 2013), Rotten Tomatoes scores, and frequent collaborators. It’s a quick and easy way to sum up his career.

You can find the infograph here. I love that it serves as a testament to the enduring skill of Scorsese. The infograph features 19 films (all of his feature length, non-documentary films), spread out over almost 40 years. Not one of them registered as rotten on Rotten Tomatoes. In fact, only two- TWO!- are under 70. Eight crossed the 90 barrier, and 13 are 80 or better. That’s astounding for a filmmaker with such a large volume of work. It’s worth noting that three of his films- Mean Streets (1973), Boxcar Bertha (1972), and Who’s That Knocking at my Door (1967)– did not have box office data available.

I’ve also made a handful of other pieces for both and Fandango. To catch you all up, this is what I’ve been working on lately.

Admittedly a little late, but here’s a flowchart- Which Movie Should You See This Holiday Season

A monthly recurring feature- The Month in Movies, featuring blu-ray releases, movies in theaters, and fun events that have happened in the world of movies during the month. Here is December and November.

A visual guide to the classic Universal monsters

And again, Scoring Scorsese



Filed under Movies

14 responses to “Scoring Scorsese (and Other Work)

  1. Phil

    Nice work John. I’m glad you are getting compensated for it.

    The Color of Money is the only Scorsese film that really doesn’t work for me (I haven’t seen his pre-Mean Street films). I also need to re-watch Bringing Out the Dead, I don’t remember much about it.

    • I’m with you on Bringing out the Dead- haven’t seen it in some time, and only the one time. I remember liking Color of Money, but I need to rewatch that one, too.

      Pre-Mean Streets, I was a little bored/unimpressed with Boxcar Bertha. Who’s That Knocking at my Door is something else because he’s so young, and trying so hard to establish his style. It’s clunky as all get-out but you can see the genius forming.

      • Phil

        I watched Wolf of Wall Street and I’m conflicted. I understand that Scorsese isn’t condoning that lifestyle, but it definitely glamorizes it. I wish there was even a little bit of time spent explaining the damage that he was doing to other people. Ironic that Belfort was inspired by the movie Wall Street (which is more clearly against Gecko’s morality) and I wonder how many 20-somethings will be inspired to go to Wall Street from this one. My 20-something son who is getting into a financial career loved it. Sigh.

        • Full disclosure… everything I’m about to say, I didn’t really pick up on when I saw the film. But in hindsight, I think it makes sense.

          I’ve seen some interesting points made about the larger point of the film. Namely, the audience is sort of implicit in glorifying Belfort’s behavior… or at least letting him get away with it. And the final shot serves as a mirror to the audience. The idea being that it all feeds into these white collar criminals constantly getting away scot-free with their crimes, and that we (the audience and/or victims) aren’t doing enough or saying anything about it.

          If nothing else, it’s a lot to chew on. I love that the film has inspired so much discussion in the last few weeks.

          • Phil

            Yes, I agree that’s all there. Stealing the American Dream is a theme that’s in many films this year – Spring Breakers, Bling Ring, Pain & Gain, American Hustle.
            Scorsese is very smart and so is the film. I would have hated it otherwise, and I’m actually leaning to the ‘like it’ side. I’m just conflicted because it’s a subtle message in an unsubtle movie. If you don’t come in with that view, it won’t change your mind.
            American Hustle is a spectacular mess of a film – a must-see. Maybe Christian Bale’s and Jennifer Lawrence’s best roles.

            • I did American Hustle today, in fact as you were leaving that comment. I… kind of disliked it. Two things I liked a lot- the sellout to the era (it was the 70s through and through), and the performances. Bale, Adams, Lawrence, Renner, Cooper… all did a great job. But the narrative was all over the place. And then there’s a perfect, tidy Scooby Doo-style ending where everything falls into place. It kind of bugged me. I wish it didn’t, because I really wanted to like it.

              • Phil

                Yea, I can see that. I loved the scattered plot – it was obvious that Russell didn’t really care about it. The ending was too neat and completely fictional, the rest was at least based in the truth. The movie did have the best line of the year – ‘Don’t put metal in the science oven!’. The microwave will forever be known as a science oven in my house.

  2. I’m glad “Bringing Out the Dead” falls where it does. Cruddy movie.

  3. Great infographic. I always appreciate your clean style. How ’bout that comment on Some people really did hate Wolf, didn’t they? Wow.

    • I can understand some of the larger complaints, feeling like the film let Belfort off too easy. I don’t agree, but it’s clearly a worthy discussion point. But the language and nudity and crude behavior? It’s rated R and it’s made by Martin Scorsese. I’m not sure what people were expecting. Granted, it’s over the top (which is the point of the film)… but it’s an R rated movie by Scorsese.

  4. Pingback: Month in Review – December | French Toast Sunday

  5. Vladdy

    The blonde wig on the She-Wolfman or whatever made me spit my drink.

    • Haha… thanks for noticing, Vladdy. Believe it or not, that’s even a silhouette of the hair from the actual actress. In retrospect, I have no idea why I felt it had to be HER hair. Any female wig would’ve worked.

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