Look closely as the snow-swept train-station scene unfolds in The Age of Innocence, and you’ll catch one of Martin Scorsese’s most personal grace notes: a shot of his father, Charles, disembarking with the director’s mother, Catherine. But the patriarch’s big moment comes in the closing credits, which begin with the dedication ”For My Father, Luciano Charles Scorsese.” Unfortunately, the elder Scorsese never saw the finished film; he died Aug. 23 / at age 80 of complications from 1992 heart surgery-eight days before the Venice premiere. The nod isn’t just for the help that Charles (who was never called Luciano) provided as a wardrobe consultant for Age, but to acknowledge his lifelong involvement in his son’s work. In addition to being a bit player in most Scorsese movies, and a featured actor in Raging Bull and GoodFellas, Charles starred in the 1974 documentary Italianamerican, a tribute to his parents that the director has called ”the best film I ever made.” Scorsese, a clothes presser for decades in New York’s Little Italy, also advised his son on neighborhood protocol and couture. ”Charlie could tell you if a wiseguy’s collar spread was off a quarter-inch,” says Innocence cowriter Jay Cocks. Charles made a larger contribution to Age, however. About 40 years ago, he took his young son to see William Wyler’s The Heiress-the study in manners that most influenced Scorsese in shaping his new Age.
Posted September 17 1993 — 12:00 AM EDT
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