The Marvel movie machine needs to be shut down

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The Marvel movie machine has been recognized at the Oscars this year, as they’ve been given a simple nomination for visual effects. However, this is meager compared to the 11 nominations and two Oscars that “Joker” has received, or the 10 nominations that Martin Scorsese’s “The Irishman” got.

Back in October 2019, Scorsese was interviewed by Empire Magazine about Marvel movies. He said that they were closer to theme park rides than movies—a cheap thrill that you can get a kick out of for about an hour and a half and then forget about for the rest of your life. They aren’t cinema to him.

The director of “Joker,” Todd Phillips, has said that he doesn’t entirely agree with Scorsese despite how much he looks up to him. He realizes that the people behind Marvel movies are craftspeople, and Scorsese is just upset about Marvel’s tendency to swamp theaters, being the center of attention at most screening spaces, and killing the possibility of any other type of film thriving.

Although Scorsese’s comments may be harsh, there is some truth to it. I lean more towards Phillips’ view, but most Marvel movies are these boardroom amalgams that are meant to churn out boatloads of money.

It’s upsetting to see this art form turn into a foolproof money-making scheme that tons of other studios have tried to replicate. And while it might seem a little ridiculous to call it that, please keep in mind that they are releasing six different films in the next two years, with the occasional Disney + series releasing alongside these movies.

The individuals behind the project may have a whole lot of heart and passion for the Marvel movie they’re making, but I know for sure that a certain mouse-eared mascot doesn’t share the same sentiments and is just hoping to make a cool $2.8 billion on a movie from a company they bought for only $4.2 billion.

“There’s really no substance,” Jonas LaViña (’21) said. “There’s nothing groundbreaking about them, so I don’t think they deserve any awards.”

If anything, Disney should be able to provide filmmakers with all the resources and money in the world to make groundbreaking movies, but instead they want a safe movie. They want it to be as homogenized as possible.

“I mean, most Marvel movies have the same plot pretty much, but Marvel has the advantage of good casting,” Penny Newcomb (’21) said.

A prime example is when Disney forced Edgar Wright, director of “Shaun of the Dead” and “Baby Driver,” to leave production. After writing four different drafts for “Ant-Man” and being forced to cut his ideas out in each iteration, he left.

Good casting only comes from good money. Some of the cast members have even expressed that they want to leave, with Tony Stark himself saying “I just want to hang up my jersey before it’s embarrassing.”

  And why shouldn’t Disney make these great movies? Why shouldn’t they attempt to make these grand movies which inspire, support, and speak to millions instead of making millions? It’s time that this huge corporation use it’s seemingly endless time and money on something other than making profit, and the silver screen—where they started—might be a good place to do that.