Martin Scorsese’s New Documentary on The New York Review of Books Airs Tonight on HBO

A quick note: Tonight, HBO will air the pre­miere of The 50 Year Argu­ment. That’s Mar­tin Scors­ese’s new doc­u­men­tary about the influ­en­tial lit­er­ary and aca­d­e­m­ic jour­nal, The New York Review of Books.

Writes The New York Times: “Robert Sil­vers has assigned thou­sands of pieces for The New York Review of Books, so why not a doc­u­men­tary film? “The 50 Year Argu­ment” … orig­i­nat­ed along the same lines as one of the lengthy, learned arti­cles in The Review: Mr. Sil­vers sought out a tal­ent­ed essay­ist, in this case Mar­tin Scors­ese, and asked him to explore a sub­ject — the magazine’s 50-year his­to­ry — that he was pas­sion­ate about but not expert in.” The result is a “tex­tured and smart but thor­ough­ly cel­e­bra­to­ry, a paean to the mag­a­zine and the amaz­ing­ly durable Mr. Sil­vers, now 84.”

Regret­tably, the film isn’t avail­able online. But you can watch the trail­er above and then a long Q&A about the film. Record­ed in Berlin ear­li­er this year, the Q&A fea­tures Scors­ese on the stage, along with David Tedeschi (his co-direc­tor), NYRB edi­tor Robert Sil­vers, pub­lish­er Rea Hed­er­man, and con­trib­u­tor Michael Green­berg.

We have many oth­er heady doc­u­men­taries (where else?) on our list of 200 Free Doc­u­men­taries Online.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Mar­tin Scors­ese Reveals His 12 Favorite Movies

Longform’s New, Free App Lets You Read Great Jour­nal­ism from Your Favorite Pub­lish­ers (includ­ing The New York Review of Books)

Revis­it Mar­tin Scorsese’s Hand-Drawn Sto­ry­boards for Taxi Dri­ver

Mar­tin Scorsese’s Very First Films: Three Imag­i­na­tive Short Works

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