Martin Scorsese thinks that 'Tar' has lifted the clouds on the "dark days" for cinema.

The legendary filmmaker had high praise for Todd Field's psychological drama – which stars Cate Blanchett as the composer and conductor Lydia Tar – and claims that it has made him more optimistic about the future of the movie industry.

In a surprise virtual appearance at the New York Film Critics Circle Awards, Scorsese said: "For so long now, so many of us see films that pretty much let us know where they're going. I mean, they take us by the hand and, even if it's disturbing at times, sort of comfort us along the way that it will all be okay by the end.

"Now this is insidious, as one can get lulled into this and ultimately get used to it, leading those of us who've experienced cinema in the past – as much more than that – to become despairing of the future of the art form, especially for younger generations. But that's on dark days."

The 80-year-old director – who has helmed movies such as 'Goodfellas' and 'The Departed' – continued: "The clouds lifted when I experienced Todd's film, 'Tar'.

"What you've done, Todd – is that the very fabric of the movie you created doesn't allow this. All the aspects of cinema and the film that you've used, attest to this.

"The shift in locations for example, the shift in locations alone do what cinema does best, which is to reduce space and time to what they are, which is nothing."

'Tar' is widely expected to be in contention for Oscars and Scorsese lavished praise on Field for his work behind the camera on the flick.

He said: "What you've done Todd – it's a real high wire act. All of this is conveyed through a Masterful Mise-en-scene, as controlled, precise, dangerous, precipitous angles and edges geometrically kind of chiselled into a wonderful 2:3:5 aspect ratio of frame compositions.

"The limits of the frame itself, and the provocation of measured long takes all reflecting the brutal architecture of her soul – Tar's soul."