Tony Zhou, on Martin Scorsese’s use of silence in films

What follows is a brief review of a review (or overview) of Martin Scorsese’s use of silence in his films.   The original review is by “Every Frame a Painting,” AKA Tony Zhou. Oddly enough, I don’t have a lot to say on this overview, because it frankly does an excellent job of speaking for itself.

And Tony seems like a cool guy, too (and maybe I shouldn’t get personal, but I’m not a professional anyway).  He is really onto something when he notes how silence can be the “essential dramatic beat of the scene,” and shows a famous Joe Pesci scene from Goodfellas. What more can I say about it? Nothing much, really. So this page kind of sucks right now. My review sucks. I may have to throw up videos of cats or boobs, or maybe cats playing with boobs, just to keep your interest.

Basically, the guy is a fan of Scorsese, and notes how flexible silence can be in the hands of an excellent director. The reviewer notes how, in Raging Bull, “The violence of the ring is really just an extension of the violence at home,” and how the sound dynamics are crucial in emphasizing such a theme. Well, that’s a good point, and we should all watch movies with such things in mind.

He does bring other movies into his overview, to compare and contrast them to Scorsese. This may throw people off a bit, but that critique of Tony’s overview could be considered petty nitpicking. It is actually practical to look at how others handle sound (or silence), compared to Scorsese. So there!

Yes, there are a few points I don’t fully, 100% grasp, but there’s nothing dramatically difficult or off-putting. An example of a possible stumbling block: Tony compares a boxing match scene from Raging Bull to a “religious slaughter.” I’m not entirely sure what that means (“ritual slaughter” may have been better), but it still makes sense. In any case, it would feel like I’m nitpicking to let that taint his overview much. It’s almost like a non sequitur on my part. (If you don’t know what the word means, look it up. I’m pretty sure it’s Spanish.)


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