Taxi Driver is a very controversial film from the team of Martin Scorsese and Paul Schrader. The movie shows the decay of the inner boroughs of Manhattan and the decline of a disturbed individual's mind.
A former Viet-Nam vet turned cab driver (Robert De Niro) is roaming the streets watching the world go to pot. The line between fantasy and reality is ever blurring because of his mental status. Slowly over time he imagines that society needs someone who will clean the streets and get rid of the vermin that runs rampant. After having a falling out at an attempt to have a normal relationship with a w.a.s.p.y woman (Cybil Shepard), he decides to become a young prostitute's savior (Jodie Foster) and bump off her sleazy pimp (Harvey Keitel). After trying to impress his ex-girlfriend by nearly killing her political employer, the cabbie decides to go out in a blaze of glory whilst confronting the pimp and the prostitute's client in a nearby flop house. Instead of being locked up in a loony bin, he's proclaimed a hero.
A strange film from Scorsese. It was made during the last phase of his innovative career. After this film, he went on to direct more subtle fair. Paul Schrader would become Hollywood's next wunderkind and have a brilliant (but short) career himself. Even today, this movie is still rife with controversy. The inflammatory racial content and views of mental illness still ruffle people's feathers.
For being written in 5 days, Taxi Driver exceeds the expectations of a typical character study. Paul Schrader and Martin Scorsese had in mind an adaption of Dostoevsky's Notes From Underground. Instead, they produced something the closest to it and its milieu was Scorsese's ubiquitous New York. Taxi drivers have an omniscience; they travel around the entire city, familiar with the energy and behaviour it all carries. After a while, one is bound to get sick of it. Travis Bickel does. … more
**** out of **** Travis Bickle, the character at the center of Martin Scorsese's masterful "Taxi Driver", is often cited as one of the great villains of cinema. Perhaps he is a villain. He shoots people. They die. He plans to cause destruction and treats it as his only cause. He's a broken man, and that is why people see him as villainous. However...Travis leads a problematic existence. He can't solve his problems easy. And I believe that his problems alone make him something … more
Yep, that's right, I think this is Martin Scorcese's best movie. Even better than Goodfellas, Casino, or Raging Bull (all fantastic movies, mind you). I first came across Taxi Driver back in December of 2006 when it was on AMC, and while I only caught about the last 60% of the movie, I was captivated by the gritty cinematography and central character, Travis Bickle. It wasn't long before I requested it as a Christmas gift, and this is one Christmas gift that hasn't … more
Martin Scorsese's intense film, a hallmark of 1970s filmmaking, graphically depicts the tragic consequences of urban alienation when a New York City taxi driver goes on a murderous rampage against the pitiable denizens inhabiting the city's underbelly. For psychotic, pistol-packing Vietnam vet Travis Bickle (Robert De Niro), New York City seems like a circle of hell. Driving his cab each night through the bleak Manhattan streets, Bickle observes with fanatical loathing the sleazy lowlifes who comprise most of his fares. By day he haunts the porno theaters of 42nd Street, taking his cues from the violent vision of life portrayed in these movies. As badly as Travis wants to connect with the people around him--including Betsy (Cybill Shepherd), a lovely blonde campaign worker, and Iris (Jodie Foster), a prepubescent prostitute he tries to save--his attempts are thwarted and his pent-up rage grows, turning him into a Mohawk-wearing walking time bomb. Scorcese fills Paul Schrader's screenplay with a tragic re...