It’s Not Just You, Murray! (1964, Martin Scorsese)

It’s hard not to watch It’s Not Just You, Murray! without keeping Scorsese’s subsequent career in mind. The film’s got some moments out of Goodfellas, but also a couple where one wonders if Francis Ford Coppola saw the short before he made the Godfather films. Not to mention Scorsese ends the film with a Fellini homage. The short, from his student days, is really like nothing else he’s done since.

What makes it so peculiar? It’s a comedy. It’s a comedy about a dim-witted guy who lucks into being a mob boss, so long as he lets his best friend (and sponsor) continue to romance his wife.

Scorsese’s got a fine editor in Eli F. Bleich, who doesn’t just keep Murray moving, he keeps it unpredictable. Some of that unpredictability has to do with just how far Scorsese’ll go for a laugh or smile.

It’s good—not great—stuff.

2/3Recommended

CREDITS

Directed by Martin Scorsese; written by Scorsese and Mardik Martin; director of photography, Richard H. Coll; edited by Eli F. Bleich; music by Coll; production designers, Lancelot Braithwaite and Victor Magnotta.

Starring Ira Rubin (Murray), San De Fazio (Joe), Andrea Martin (Wife), Catherine Scorsese (Mother) and Robert Uricola (Singer).