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2000 VHS cover, coupled with Scorsese's 1967 short film The Big Shave
Directed byMartin Scorsese
Written byLawrence D. Cohen
Mardik Martin
Produced byElaine Attias
Bert Lovitt
Saul Rubin
StarringCatherine Scorsese
Charles Scorsese
Martin Scorsese (uncredited)
CinematographyAlec Hirschfeld
Edited byBert Lovitt
Running time
49 mins
CountryUnited States

Italianamerican is a 1974 American documentary film directed by Martin Scorsese and featuring his parents Catherine and Charles, who reflect on their experiences as the children of Italian immigrants to New York City.


Over dinner at their New York apartment on Elizabeth Street, Martin engages his parents in a lively and candid discussion about their lives, discussing such topics as their upbringing, family, religion, marriage, their Italian ancestors, post-war life in Italy, and the hardships of poor Sicilian immigrants striving to succeed in America.[1][2] Catherine also demonstrates her technique for cooking meatballs, a recipe later printed in the end credits of the film.[3]


Italianamerican was received positively after its screening at the 1974 New York Film Festival, with the New York Daily News reporting the film "completely charmed" the "usually blase festival audience."[4]

Home video[edit]

On May 26, 2020, the Criterion Collection released Scorsese Shorts, a compilation of five early short films directed by Scorsese: Italianamerican, American Boy: A Profile of Steven Prince, The Big Shave, What's a Nice Girl Like You Doing in a Place Like This? and It's Not Just You, Murray![5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Garrett, Robert (June 2, 1990). "A Self-Portrait of Martin Scorsese at ICA". The Boston Globe. p. 10.
  2. ^ "Scorsese Is at Home with Personal Films". The Detroit Free Press. September 7, 1990. p. 4C.
  3. ^ "Catherine Scorsese's pasta & meatballs recipe". Retrieved May 27, 2018.
  4. ^ Carroll, Kathleen (August 17, 1975). "A Director in the Family". The New York Daily News. p. L7.
  5. ^ "Scorsese Shorts". Retrieved May 26, 2020.

External links[edit]