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Taxi Driver
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Taxi Driver More at IMDbPro »

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

This is a story that is sickening in EVERY way but is the definition of perfect filmmaking

10/10
Author: Bobson10 from Canada
17 January 2013

Where do I begin when talking about Taxi Driver. In my opinion, the best movie ever created in cinema. Period.

This was one of my first Scorsese films and it changed my life. He is one of a kind. I love the way he tells the story through the lens. He is the best storyteller with the camera. I love breaking down this film. The way he positions his cameras and the angles he uses the cameras is flawless! He was the first director to make me think about what's happening behind the camera than what's happening in front of it. Genius Director

Robert De Niro is amazing in this film. His portrayal as a lonely human being is frightening. You love watching him on screen but at the same time, you want to look away but you can't. You want to know what's going to happen to this very disturbed character but you're afraid to see where this character is going to take you. De Niro deserves all the recognition for his work.

A complete Masterpiece of Cinema! If I could give this movie a 11/10, I would. A must see for all film lovers!

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

At a Glance: Taxi Driver

10/10
Author: johnXny from United States
22 February 2011

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Giving this movie more than just a quick look should be named a mistake already. Through all of things it covers such as the Political Campaign to Sport and his girls, are only a small thought in the true Character study of Travis (De Niro). Its not really a day in the life of someone who's crazy, but a life of hardship and loneliness that has been brought to this very point the viewer is witnessing. If you watch the movie for more than ten minutes or review and try to get a better understanding you'll notice different details about what the movie is actually trying to display.

** SPOILERS **

The movie starts off in New York City where we first see Travis applying to be a night shift cab driver. He claims to not be able to sleep at night and drives around. Through the movie we evaluate how lonesome and anti-social he is by how many times he fails to befriend or make conversations with others. Through messing up a relationship with a woman working at campaign office, and other faults such as a murderous man in his cab, a teen aged prostitute, and the "Scum" observed on the streets, Travis slides deeper into a disturbed mental state which causes him to become violent and stand up against what he's finds wrong through the film. He attempts to assassinate the presidential candidate through the movie that Betsy supports because like Sport (Harvey Keitel) to Iris (Jodie Foster), he is a man holding her back from being set free or being with him.

**THE ENDING**

If you've seen the movie you would be aware of the ending that almost donned the film an X rating.

Iris is declared free and is sent back home to her family. (this is the only part of the ending we can actually call true)

Ending 1: The Viewers misunderstood, but emotionally well ending.

After the massacre Travis spends time healing in the hospital and is eventually released and named a Hero by the press. Iris's family give him thanks for rescuing her and being such a good person. Life returns to normal and he continues to drive his taxi, he picks up Betsy and a fare. Through confidence they speak and she is impressed by his actions, she asks how much and but he doesn't take her money. Travis is finally known and loved for protecting the girl and taking wrong doers off the streets. Accomplished. Driving off he views himself in the mirror, and a piercing noise dissuades his attention and his mirror gets moved trying to view something in the street. This ending could be called true by the possibility of a sequel in the works.

Ending 2: The Satisfying and perfect character study ending.

Through the film we watch Travis go from being a sort of normal guy just trying to get by, from the end he slips up and finds himself working between assassin and vigilante. We watch him kill the people holding Iris from living what would be a normal life, and see him being wounded in the process. As the police come in Travis his fingers to his head like a gun and you see when his head tilts back his eyes roll back. In film thats dignified as a characters death. Directly after the scene, we notice Travis's life has improved and he has been renown as a hero by the press, thanked by Iris's family, a good guy, and also confident to the woman he's been trying to get the entire movie. Travis finally has the satisfaction he's been looking for the whole time, but doesn't it seem like its happening rapidly together? In the film you have watched Travis's persona changing along with the character analysis. Knowing his goals the entire time you finally get to see them flourish, after the tone of the film changes entirely. To the Point where Travis tilts his head back, to where he adjusts his mirrors, your seeing his fantasy and fulfillment he was always wishing for. To be seen and noticed, as a hero or maybe even less. Travis is finding satisfaction in what isn't actually true, as his last dying thoughts. He doesn't notice something in the rear view mirror with a sharp noise, he vanishes from his sight because he isn't truly there. His life has ended and his fantasy has finished along with the film.

As the movie is a character study for insanity this ending would be perfect because you see him from his good descent to a vigilante to his last dying thoughts of love and being noticed he dreamed of. It makes the movie beautiful and worth all of the hype just to see, his character as detailed and deformed as it is. I can watch it over and over and notice something else every time.

The ending is haunting every time, no matter how you think about it because it leaves you with a 'what just happened'? If it means a sequel to find out what happened with fiction or reality, life or death for Travis. I Think i would rather keep the mystery

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

"Someday a real rain will come" (spoilers)

Author: Ricky Roma (thepestilence001@yahoo.co.uk) from http://rioranchofilmreviews.blogspot.com/
12 August 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It's always a bit worrying when someone tells you that they deeply identify with Travis Bickle. What, so you enjoy taking women to porno films, have a gun fetish and enjoy befriending 12-year-old prostitutes? If you say so, mate.

But seriously, although it's a bit disturbing when people tell you they agree wholeheartedly with Travis Bickle's outlook on life ("someday a real rain will come"), I'm sure most people can relate to him to a certain extent. The loneliness is certainly something that most people have felt at some time. And really, even though you're surrounded by millions of people, large cities can be the loneliest places on the planet. Everywhere you go you see people making connections while you can only peer at them from the outside.

This is certainly the case for Travis. He's a perpetual outsider. He just doesn't fit in anywhere. Just take the scenes with his fellow cabbies. Here are his work colleagues, people who go through the same crap as him, and yet he has nothing to say to them. They can't understand him and vice versa. But despite this he does try and reach out. He tries to tell one of his colleagues the crazy thoughts that are going through his head. But just as you feel he's going to reveal himself, he has to swallow some of the stupidest advice that's ever been put forward. A chance to make a connection has been lost. And yet, even though this cabbie spouts random nonsense, one thing he says has a ring of truth. He tells Travis he should get laid.

And that's what Travis really needs. He desperately needs a shag. He needs a proper release. But while Travis does try and meet someone, he goes about it in the wrong way. In one excruciating scene he tries to pick up a woman at a porno theatre. Yeah, that's going to work. A woman who's working in a porno theatre is really going to want to date one of the jerk-offs she has to serve.

And then of course there's the scene where he takes Betsy to see a movie. Fair play to Travis, though, he does ask this attractive woman out on a date and does a decent enough job of holding a conversation with her (although he's rather intense and insults one of her work colleagues), but just when things may be going right, when he may have a chance to ease his crippling loneliness, he decides to take her to see something from his favourite genre – porn. Even though Travis is desperately trying to reach out to outside world he's continually reinforcing his loneliness. And when Betsy's response to this charming outing is overwhelmingly negative, and when she no longer wants to speak to him, he blames the world for his sorry situation. He's completely unable to look within himself. The problem, apparently, is with everyone else, not him.

So in light of this failed attempt to get laid, Travis reverts to a form of masturbation. I mean, all the guns he buys and all the macho posturing before the mirror is pure onanism. He's striking out against his impotence and the world that mocks him for it. And all the time when he sees sex or couples in love on TV he points his gun at them. He wants to destroy these people who have the audacity to pursue some sort of happiness.

And when you think about it, Travis' whole idiotic attempt to kill Senator Palantine is the action of a jilted lover. Here's a man that Betsy adores so therefore Travis is going to blow his brains out. But of course Travis can't even do this. Again he's impotent.

So with this act of vengeance a failure, the next best thing for Travis is to 'rescue' Iris, the 12-year-old prostitute played by Jodie Foster. I guess it's a strange kind of delusion that affects the lonely man, but they often seem to think that they're on some sort of righteous mission; that their pain and suffering is there to serve a greater good and that they'll be worshipped when they're finally understood.

And so finally Travis gets to strike out against this diseased society. He finally gets a chance to get his gun off. And he does it in the most vile, sickening way – blowing fingers off and blowing people's brains out. This is the girl's knight in shining armour. This is her hero – a man sporting a Mohawk and dripping with blood.

And so this begs the question as to whether the epilogue is some sort of pre-death fantasy on the part of Travis or whether it's a satirical swipe at the way we sometimes make heroes out of monsters. I mean, we get to hear a letter from Iris' parents where Travis is lauded as a hero. We get to see Travis with his work colleagues – now he's one of the gang. And then finally we get to see Betsy. You get the feeling that maybe she wants to apologise to Travis and give their fledgling relationship another try. But instead Travis drives off. Surely this is precisely what Travis would want to happen. He'd want to become the righteous hero, he'd want to gain acceptance from those around him and he'd want a chance to stick it to that filthy whore who didn't understand him. Surely in reality his bloodbath would be quickly forgotten. And surely, if he survived, he'd end up in jail.

But that ambiguity is one of the many things that makes Taxi Driver such an outstanding film. You're presented with one of the most unflinching depictions of loneliness and how you respond to it is up to you. Hero or villain, saint or sinner – the choice is yours.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

The Cinema of Alienation

9/10
Author: David H. Schleicher from New Jersey, USA
2 January 2007

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Working for the first time with misanthropic screenwriter Paul Schrader, and using Alfred Hitchcock's music score maker extraordinaire Bernard Hermann, Martin Scorsese crafted one of the bleakest and most memorable films about alienation with 1976's "Taxi Driver". Here we have the lonely cab driver Travis Bickle cruising the sleaziest streets in New York City, looking for love in all the wrong places, plotting his way to leave his mark with violence, and looking for redemption in the rescue of a child prostitute named Iris (a very young Jodie Foster).

Like the finest films from its decade, "Taxi Driver" is a intimate character-driven film haunted by the ghosts of Vietnam and Nixon-era politics that stained the psyche of the American people, especially those disenfranchised in the urban sectors. It's also a classic Scorsese story, nihilistic to the extreme, and containing what is still one of the most graphic and shocking bloodbaths when Travis Bickle finally goes on his rampage. The end result is quite ironic, and leaves a bitter halo imprinted on the viewer's mind.

By all accounts, this is a landmark film: one that heralded the first masterpiece from a director who would go on to a long and fruitful career, presented Robert DeNiro as a formidable headliner, and proclaimed Jodie Foster a serious actress. It's also one of the most controversial movies ever made, as it is the only film that can claim to have inspired an attempted presidential assassination when John Hinkle tried to shoot Ronald Reagan to impress Jodie Foster whom he became obsessed with after seeing this film, which is not too far removed from Travis Bickle's aborted attempt to kill a Senator to impress Cybil Shepherd's character. All of this makes "Taxi Driver" a film classic, albeit a very dark one that will always have many people crying foul.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Admirable, if uncomfortable

Author: Framescourer from London, UK
9 November 2004

It's a thoroughly realized idea, Paul Schrader's script probably the best thing in it. Bernard Hermann's score is technically exemplary and also a full symbiotic partner of this very modern film. It's uncomfortably violent from start to finish but with only one gory set-piece, right at the denouement: a testament to actors and director alike who follow the narrative tension through onto the screen.

Despite these impressions however, it is nonetheless an awkward watch. Scorsese wants an urban panorama: he gets it with an contemporaneously experimental style - voice-over, a camera unfettered from the leading man, slow motion and other editing which suggests a visual thread represented from memory rather than continuous real-time. As a result the story is not told BY Travis Bickle (despite his own voice-over) but OF him, as divorced from him.

So, the film becomes about the relationships between the characters - not about the characters in isolation, about whom, disturbingly, we aren't allowed to care. Added to this a strong, contained central performance from de Niro (I'm not a huge fan, but good work is good work) and good support in the two relationships that drive the film (Shepherd and Foster, particularly the latter) and its impact is undeniable. 7.5/10

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

"Are you talking to me?"

8/10
Author: abgkasjlkasjla from Denmark
8 November 2003

This movie is Scorsese's masterpiece; it is a realistic portrayal of one mans reaction to seeing the very extreme nightlife of New York: pushers, psychos, whores, the list goes on. After seeing the movie 4-5 times, I still have to admit, there are some scenes which I don't fully understand, but I can still somewhat appreciate them. Robert DeNiro's acting is superb, as is Cybill Shepherds, and Jodie Fosters. All of them play their respective character convincingly. All of the minor characters are also interesting; most of them are either a psycho, racist or just plain despicable, in some way or another. The transformation that DeNiro's character undertakes, from being a nice, gentle guy, to being a gun-toting self-help psycho, is amazing. It's got some slow scenes, but overall, I recommend this to anyone who likes a psychological drama, or any hardcore DeNiro fan. 8/10.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Perfect movie making

10/10
Author: Jason-Phillips
15 April 2003

Perfect movie making, that includes a great lead actor, director and scored with perfect music. Some can relate to either the narrative or/and the character development. My father believes the film meant a lot to him in the seventies coming back from a war he didn't want to fight in, so its interesting to see how reverent it is today. The ending confused me.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

DeNiro at the peak of acting excellence

10/10
Author: Maniac-9 from St. Louis, MO
17 January 2013

Robert DeNiro gives a tour de force of acting excellence in this movie. One of the best acting performances of all time. This is a period of DeNiro's career when he was consistently churning out Oscar calibre performances one after another. He had this movie, Godfather Part II, The Deer Hunter, Raging Bull all within the same basic time frame. When DeNiro and Scorsese were teaming up to make movies it was the best actor/director combinations in movie history. You had the best mind for movies in Scorsese working with the best on screen performer of his time.

It's a study of a man who's completely alone in the world even when surrounded by other people. What DeNiro was able to do just looking into a mirror asking "Are you talking to me" by himself is one of the best movie scenes in movie history.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

De Niro was outstanding!

9/10
Author: lastliberal from United States
27 April 2007

I actually saw this for the first time this morning. I couldn't sleep and it was on at 4am. It was every bit as good as I was led to believe.

Comparing the two, I cannot see how this lost to Rocky at the Academy Awards. Scorsese fans will also agree that he deserved a directing award for this film. While De Niro and Foster were fantastic, I feel that Cybill Shepherd was equally good, and should have been recognized for her performance. This film won 18 awards out of 27 nominations. Basically only the Academy didn't get on the bandwagon. But, in all those nominations, none for Sheperd. I really think that was wrong.

Great film, and I will watch it again and again.

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Martin Scorsese's masterpiece.

9/10
Author: paolo_pap2000 from Italy
1 January 2005

It's a beautiful and violent story that talk about a lonely man, Travis Bickle,and the city where he lives in.Driving by night, the protagonist meets the strangest people in the world. He hates New York because he think it's a dirty city with bad people. But at the end of the film he saves a 12 years old prostitute and kill her pimps, so he becomes a hero. The story, that is written by Paul Schrader, is full of violence, and bad words but at the same time it is also sad and a bit romantic. Robert De Niro is fantastic and Bernard Herrmann's music is good too. Taxi driver is one of the most beautiful films in the history of the cinema.

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