For a few, being a director is a job, but for legends like Martin Scorcese, directing is as much a part of their lives as the oxygen we breathe. It’s little wonder then that Scorcese, who recently celebrated his 73 rd birthday, has retirement far from his mind and is currently working on various projects including his much-anticipated gangster movie entitled The Irishman, which will star Robert De Niro. But did you know that Scorcese’s illustrious career actually started out making epic shorts? In 1967 Scorcese directed a six-minute anti-Vietnam war protest called The Big Shave, where a young man casually hacks away at his face with his razor. This gory and powerful short was an early insight into just how amazing this legendary director could be and now, with a catalogue of movies spanning over four decades, it’s little wonder that Scorcese is considered one of the greatest of all time – but with such a vast catalogue of superb movies, which should be considered the best?

1: TAXI DRIVER (1976)

Taxi Driver is not only one of Scorcese’s greatest movies, but it’s also considered one of the best modern classics. After enjoying mainstream success for a few years, Scorcese managed to do something every director dreams of – he was given the freedom to stretch the parameters of what had been seen in Hollywood before and create the exact masterpiece he wanted. The result was a movie so gritty and at times so psychotic that critics are still talking about it decades later.

Taxi Driver

2: GOODFELLAS (1990)

One of the greatest attributes of Goodfellas is that this movie is ridiculously re-watchable. While other movies can only be watched once or twice before boredom sets in, Goodfellas never gets old. That’s because, from start to finish, this movie is epic. After-all, what other movies out there have you tried sohard to learn every line so you can quote it and impress your friends?


3: CASINO (1995)

Often dubbed as a sequel to Goodfellas – despite it’s completely different characters – it’s true that both movies are written by Nicholas Pileggi, both star Robert De Niro and Joe Pesci and both tell the story of the mob falling from power. The similarities might have been too much for critics, but for Scorcese fans Casino was a wonderful dip back into the violent underworld of the mob and their casinos. Indeed, Casino is also considered one of the greatest gambling movies ever made.

4: RAGING BULL (1980)

On paper Jake LaMotta’s 1970 memoir entitled Raging Bull was okay. Sure, it was interesting as far as autobiographies go, however, it was hardly a page turner. Then Scorcese got his hands on it. Released in 1980, Raging Bull was one of the director’s and Robert De Niro’s greatest collaborations, with De Niro himself getting into superb shape to portray LaMotta at his prime and then gaining 60lbs to show him in the 60s as a washed up comedian. Note also the first appearance of Joe Pesci as LaMotta’s brother. A relatively unknown actor at the time, he became one of Scorcese’s most worked with actors and has made headlines recently for his surprising refusal to star in Scorcese’s latest project.

Raging Bull

5: THE DEPARTED (2006)

The Departed

It might be surprising to hear that Scorcese didn’t get the Best Director Academy award for his other classics like Goodfellas, Taxi Driver or Raging Bull. In fact, it wasn’t until The Departed, staring Leonardo DiCaprio, was released that Scorcese was finally handed that elusive Oscar. The Departed is an incredibly entertaining story of the Irish mob planting a mole in the Massachusetts State Police. The story will keep you on the edge of your seat until the very last moment, which is probably why it was so popular at the cinema where it brought in nearly $300 million.