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new_york_new_york_ver1Martin Scorsese’s “New York, New York” is without a doubt one of the worst movies ever made by a brilliant filmmaker.  Awful, excruciating, endless, unpleasant and nearly unendurable, it sets a special low point for filmmaking few could ever hope to achieve.  Scorsese smashes together the overblown style of Old Hollywood musicals with his love of detestable ingrates played by Robert De Niro.  De Niro recycles his intense and destructive persona from other Scorsese works here and the effect is so off putting it makes watching “New York, New York” feel like getting punched in the face for nearly 3 hours.  The counterbalance to De Niro’s endless brutality is Liza Minnelli as his milquetoast wife.  Their pairing results in what can only be called anti-chemistry.  He walks through the whole movie looking as if he wants to beat her with a coat hanger while she cowers in fear.  It’s disgusting.

Undisciplined and unending, the film is not merely made up of awkward and uncomfortable scenes, they also run well past any reasonable length.  The very first meeting between De Niro and Minnelli feels so protracted and unsettling one is tempted to end the experience right then and there, but it simply serves as foreshadowing for the entire movie.  It’s also hopelessly padded out with endless jazz sessions and musical interludes.  Without the endless big band worshiping Scorsese could”ve shaved 40 minutes off his epic fail.  One wished Scorsese had just stayed home and listened to the records he clearly cherishes so much.

“New York, New York” is considered one of the great failures by a film genius and no amount of revisionist insight is going to change that.  It’s a horrible, horrible, horrible movie.  One I never hope to see any frame of ever again.


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