MoMA Presents

Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman

Dec 27, 2019–Jan 2, 2020


The Irishman. 2019. USA. Directed by Martin Scorsese. Courtesy Netflix
  • MoMA, Floor T2/T1 The Debra and Leon Black Family Film Center

Forgoing his trademark flashy camerawork, music cues, and intricate montages, Martin Scorsese delivers a somber masterpiece in The Irishman. Working from Steve Zaillian’s script (itself adapted from Charles Brandt’s book I Heard You Paint Houses), Scorsese deftly weaves together multiple, decade-spanning story lines, all centered around Frank Sheeran (Robert De Niro), a Philadelphia mob hit man who finds himself at the intersection of crime and power in mid-20th-century America. Sheeran works his way up the organized crime food chain, from union driver to working for boss Russel Bufalino (a mesmerizing Joe Pesci) to bodyguard and mob liaison for Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino). Joy, ostensibly derived from the ever-present envelopes of cash, or the layers of family that insulate each man, is almost completely absent from the characters’ lives. The film’s final third is an expertly crafted elegy to the loneliness of the aged gangster.

Organized by the Department of Film.

  • This film series is part of MoMA Presents.

    Support for the exhibition is provided by the Annual Film Fund. Leadership support for the Annual Film Fund is provided by the Kate W. Cassidy Foundation and Steven Tisch, with major contributions from Jo Carole and Ronald S. Lauder, Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP), Yuval Brisker Charitable Foundation, The Brown Foundation, Inc., of Houston, Marlene Hess and James D. Zirin, Karen and Gary Winnick, and The Junior Associates of The Museum of Modern Art.


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