Marvel movies are the order of the day in Hollywood - more specifically, the 23 movies that make up the Marvel Cinematic Universe to date. Five of those movies find themselves in the top ten highest-grossing movies of all time at the box office, with Avengers: Endgame clinching the number one spot earlier this year. However, as hard as this might be to believe, not everyone loves the MCU.
Suffice to say, although MCU movies are making literally billions of dollars at the box office, they aren't considered to be cinematic classics like Pulp Fiction and Goodfellas - and neither are they trying to be. That hasn't stopped iconic director Martin Scorsese from taking a pop at them, though. During a recent interview with Empire via (Variety). Scorsese likened the MCU's contributions to the movie world to visiting a theme park, adding that the MCU "isn't cinema."
As with anything controversial uttered during an interview on as big a stage as this, it has sparked quite the debate between fans on both sides of the argument. The split is ultimately between cinema-goers who believe movies should be "good" like Scorsese and fans who prefer their movies to be "fun," such as the minds behind the MCU. Objectively, for a movie to go down in history as a classic, it needs to fall on the "good" side of the fence. In the video game world, it's quite the opposite.
Games Are Fun, Movies Are Good
Much like the movie world, in gaming, there is a similar split between fun games and good games. However, most tend to lean in the opposite direction than they do when it comes to movies. Yes, a beautiful looking game that has been meticulously crafted will be appreciated by a lot of people. Take Red Dead Redemption 2, for example. It's a game that will have required untold hours of work to create and the end result is a beautiful one. The extensive game has been criticized for not being enough fun, though. Other games that require a lot of work with not a lot of pay off often fall into that category.
Scorsese and the hordes of fans fighting his corner aren't the only ones trying to diminish what the MCU has done for cinema right now either. Just as the Scorsese hype was dying down, Francis Ford Coppola was asked what he thought about the whole thing while picking up his Prix Lumiere at the Lumière Film Festival. For those unfamiliar with Coppola, he worked on movies such as The Godfather and Apocalypse Now.
Not only did Coppola double down on Scorsese's comments, but he also added to them. The director said his fellow Italian-American was kind to simply refer to Marvel movies as not being cinema and stated that he would label them downright despicable. Coppola also claimed all of the MCU movies are essentially the same and questioned why so many people are okay with watching the same movies over and over again?
Over & Over & Over Again
That brings us neatly back to why this same argument will never occur in the video game world. In gaming, playing the same title over and over again is something we'd hazard to guess almost everyone reading this article has done. We all have our favorite games on specific consoles and we return to them whenever we get the chance, whether it be Sonic 2, Super Mario Sunshine, or even games like FIFA and Madden. Gamers love nothing more than returning to games they enjoyed in the past. It should also be noted that fun is valued over quality in all of the games mentioned in that shortlist.
Not only is the Scorsese/Coppola/MCU feud an example of good versus fun, but it's also a battle between two different generations. You need only look at the list of releases for the past couple of years to see that the dynamic in cinema has changed. If it's not a sequel, a remake, or a superhero movie, chances are it won't be making much money at the box office. There's no such divide in gaming right now, but could there be in the future?
Fortnite Is Going To Ruin Everything, Isn't It?
I wonder what kinds of games I will be saying “aren’t games” when i get older and hate all the new games the kids are into?— Cory Barlog 🎮 🎃🦇🕸️ (@corybarlog) October 21, 2019
God of War director Cory Barlog had a little fun with the subject via a recent tweet. Barlog wrote "I wonder what kinds of games I will be saying 'aren’t games' when I get older and hate all the new games the kids are into?" That's a great question. The trouble is, we just can't see it. Yes, games like Fortnite and mobile titles riddled with microtransactions are the order of the day, but they haven't replaced games like Barlog's God Of War.
If that does happen down the line, perhaps the director's tweet poking fun at the movie world will become a reality. For now, the balance between fun and quality in video games will remain as it is, and we are entirely okay with that balance.