I’m not sure what prompted Martin Scorsese, a few days ago, to send his daughter an “open letter” by way of an Italian news magazine called L’Espresso. Perhaps she hasn’t called in a while, though she’s 14 and likely lives at home; perhaps there’s some young editor at L’Espresso who thought this form would bring Scorsese closer to his public. In any event, it was an oddly simpering way to start off a piece of life advice from a great director. Not to mention condescending in a gendered sort of way; people never seem to write open letters to their young sons.
I wish I could tell you that Scorsese elevated the form, but sadly, no. After waxing rhapsodic for several paragraphs about “cinema” — a red flag of a word if ever there was one, indicating that the writer is about to disappear into a fog of self-regard — we get to this doozy of a paragraph: