Home  /  Everything Else: Article  /  The 'Martin Scorsese Style' and His Films You Need To Watch

The 'Martin Scorsese Style' and His Films You Need To Watch

By Shafiyqah  /  24 Aug 2021 (Tuesday)

How can you make films authentic yet cinematic? 

As said by Martin Scorsese himself,

“It’s very difficult to describe how inspiration hits you, where it comes from. To me there's no difference between the ring… and  the sidewalk... and the bedroom. It's different levels of intensity...then it has a narrative of its own.”

Martina Scorsese is a prominent director in the film industry.

Scorsese has been in the game of filmmaking ever since forever. He is known for his work which is often based on harsh and often violent depiction of American Culture. Scorsese has won numerous significant honors, including the Oscar for "Best Director" for The Departed, the Golden Globe for "Best Director Motion Picture" for Hugo, and the Golden Globe for "Cecil B. Demille Award."

Determining a director's cinematic style by examining a single piece of the filmmaking puzzle is difficult. I have laid out some of Scorsese's decision-making process in four areas of concentration so you can understand the big picture.

The four areas of concentration are as such:



Scorsese is known for telling storylines set in immoral environments or with organized crime. On the other hand, its all about the character. They can be self-destructive or obsessed, but more than anything, Scorsese enjoys characters with flaws. Although some may or may not disagree with his techniques, his goals are sincere. One instance I would use will be Travis Bickle from 'Taxi Driver'. His character is isolated and a complicated man who is driven to madness by the world surrounding him; however, he is ready to take charge also. Scorsese crafts his scenes and makes us empathize with Travis.

So, if you want to approach tales in the same way that Scorsese did, search for flawed characters who live in an immoral world. Due to the fact that these characters dwell in high-state environments. There will always be a chance for an interesting scene.

Production Design

Scorsese frequently sets his storylines in a real-world setting and surrounds them with raw, beautiful, and genuine visuals. Apartments, restaurants, and communities are all real. Cities like Paris, Tibet, Japan, and, of course, New York. Significantly, his films' ensembles are frequently quite realistic, making them approachable to the audience.

Surround your characters in the most raw and authentic environs possible to approach production design like him. It could be a good strategy if you want to connect with your audience in the same way that Scorsese does. 


Scorsese often avoids distracting color grades and selections, however he does like to utilize color to indicate danger. Characters can be paired with colors as a way to identify them. Colour has the potential to attract unwanted or undesired attention. Which is a bad idea when you're working in an unethical or secretive environment.

Take a peek at Goodfellas. 

The lads have just completed the most daring heist of their life. One of the members makes a significant purchase; they could have made the car white or green, but they chose pink because the car's purpose is to attract attention. Make use of colour as a storytelling tool. Something that elicits a psychological response while simultaneously drawing attention to your characters.


Lighting, camera movement, lens choice, and framing are all examples of great cinematography. Scorsese prefers to employ practical lights to assist illuminate his settings. To stimulate and heighten the mood of the situation, he will use pans, tilts, zooms, and huge camera movements.

In 'Cape Fear', for example, he will utilize a slow camera movement to evoke dread and tension or a quick camera movement to inject excitement. If someone is surprised, he compounds it by pushing in quickly. When a character dies, he generally displays them in an overhead shot, which has become his hallmark. We often interpret these images as representing God or the afterlife. After all, he was raised as a Catholic. *Fast forward to 0:13 to get a better picture of what I am talking about*

Watch this video by StudioBinder, to get the concrete idea and whole layout process of Scorsese decision-making in his films: Youtube

At last, I present you five of Martin Scorsese's best films! Try to spot some of his modus operandi that I have mentioned above when you're watching these films.

Here are the five Martin Scorsese's films to understand his work of art:

1)Taxi Driver (1976)

Travis, an ex-marine and Vietnam veteran, works as a taxi driver in New York City. One day, he decides to save an underage prostitute from her pimp in an effort to clean the city of its corruption.

The film garnered multiple awards, including the "Palme d'Or at the 1976 Cannes Film Festival" and four Academy Award nominations, including "Best Picture", "Best Actor (for De Niro)", and "Best Supporting Actress (for Foster)."

Watch it here: Google Play

2) Goodfellas (1990)

Young Henry Hill, with his friends Jimmy and Tommy, begins the climb from being a petty criminal to a gangster on the mean streets of New York.

Six Academy Awards were nominated for the film, including "Best Picture" and "Best Director", with Pesci taking home the award for "Best Supporting Actor". The British Academy of Film and Television Arts awarded the film five prizes, including "Best Film" and "Best Director". Goodfellas was also chosen the greatest film of the year by a number of reviewers' organizations.

Watch it here: Google Play

3) The Irishman (2019)

Hit man Frank Sheeran looks back at the secrets he kept as a loyal member of the Bufalino crime family in this acclaimed film from Martin Scorsese.

The film earned multiple awards, including 10 nominations for "Best Picture", "Best Director", "Best Supporting Actor" for Pacino and Pesci, and "Best Adapted Screenplay" at the 92nd Academy Awards. It was also nominated for five prizes at the 77th Golden Globe Awards, including "Best Motion Picture" – Drama, and ten nominations at the 73rd British Academy Film Awards, including "Best Film".

Watch it here: Netflix

4) Shutter Island (2010)

Teddy Daniels and Chuck Aule, two US marshals, are sent to an asylum on a remote island in order to investigate the disappearance of a patient, where Teddy uncovers a shocking truth about the place.

The soundtrack was notable for its use of classical music by composers such as Gustav Mahler and modern classical music by composers such as Krzysztof Penderecki, György Ligeti, John Cage, Ingram Marshall, and Max Richter.

Watch it here: Netflix

5) Hugo (2011)

Hugo is a young orphan who loves pottering around with the station clocks and whose most treasured possession is his late father's automaton. His mission is to find a key that will get it working.

Hugo was nominated for 11 Academy Awards (including Best Picture) and won five of them: "Best Cinematography", "Best Art Direction", "Best Sound Mixing", "Best Sound Editing" and "Best Visual Effects". It was also nominated for eight BAFTAs, "winning two, and three Golden Globes", giving Scorsese his third Golden Globe for "Best Director".

Watch it here: Netflix

Several decades have past but, Martin Scrosese is a notable name that those aspiring to be filmmakers will most definitely be aware of. His cinematography and authenticity surely stands out. It is said that his last screen film was supposedly, 'The Irishman', however, recent news foretells that he has an upcoming film, 'Killer of The Flower Moon'.

Have you ever watched a Martin Scorsese film before? Let us know in the comments below!

You say

Get Showtimes