Sydney Film Festival Announces Essential Scorsese: Selected by David Stratton

30 Mar 2016

Sydney Film Festival, Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) and the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia (NFSA) announce that David Stratton will present a program of 10 essential films directed by Martin Scorsese.

The curated films will screen as the retrospective program during the 63rd Sydney Film Festival (8-19 June) and in Melbourne at ACMI (27 May-12 June) to coincide with ACMI’s exhibition SCORSESE (26 May-18 September). All 10 films will screen at the NFSA in Canberra (1-23 July) after Sydney Film Festival’s screenings.

The retrospective program of ten titles, including specially imported 35mm prints, curated by David Stratton, entitled Essential Scorsese: Selected by David Stratton, features works by one of the most influential directors of our time, including Taxi Driver, Goodfellas, Raging Bull and The Age of Innocence.

The renowned critic and broadcaster, was appointed director of the Sydney Film Festival 50 years ago, and held the position from 1966 to 1983. Stratton will introduce selected screenings in the retrospective program.

David Stratton says: “Scorsese talks in a rapid-fire style as though he doesn’t have enough time to describe everything he knows. He’s like a character in a 1930s movie. His films are passionate too. His best are explosive in their impact, crammed with information and detail. On the one hand, his Catholic upbringing leads him to tackle religious subjects (The Last Temptation of Christ, Kundun) while the Saturday matinee kid in him revels in the trashy gore of his gangster films.”

Essential Scorsese: Selected by David Stratton will screen over two weekends during the Festival (8 – 19 June) at the Art Gallery of NSW.

The 10 films in the program are:

Mean Streets (1973)
Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974)
Taxi Driver (1976)
New York, New York (1977)
Raging Bull (1980)
The King Of Comedy (1982)
Goodfellas (1990)
The Age of Innocence (1993)
Casino (1995)
The Aviator (2004)

Sydney Film Festival Director Nashen Moodley says, “Essential Scorsese: Selected by David Stratton, brings to the Festival for the second year, one of Australia’s great masters of film criticism, to curate a selection of films by one of his favourite living directors. Scorsese is widely considered one of the most important directors of all time. His ground-breaking films and gritty, meticulous filmmaking style are essential viewing for all film fans.”

Australian Centre for the Moving Image Director & CEO Katrina Sedgwick says, “With the presentation of the wonderful Scorsese exhibition at ACMI this year, we’re delighted to continue our collaboration with Sydney Film Festival and the National Film and Sound Archive of Australia in presenting Essential Scorsese: Selected by David Stratton. It’s wonderful to have David Stratton’s exceptional eye curating this program of films from one of the world’s greatest directors.”

Coinciding with the film season, ACMI presents SCORSESE, a rich exhibition featuring over 600 objects and footage from the director’s collection and those of his collaborators.

NFSA CEO Michael Loebenstein says, “We're very excited about the returning partnership with Sydney Film Festival and ACMI. Scorsese has a strong following in Canberra, and his fans will be delighted with this retrospective curated by David Stratton.”