A mentally unstable Vietnam War veteran works as a night-time taxi driver in New York City where the perceived decadence and sleaze feeds his urge for violent action, attempting to save a preadolescent prostitute in the process.
Robert De Niro,
When Jake LaMotta steps into a boxing ring and obliterates his opponent, he's a prizefighter. But when he treats his family and friends the same way, he's a ticking time bomb, ready to go off at any moment. Though LaMotta wants his family's love, something always seems to come between them. Perhaps it's his violent bouts of paranoia and jealousy. This kind of rage helped make him a champ, but in real life, he winds up in the ring alone. Written by
Thelma Schoonmaker's husband, director Michael Powell, was consulted about the weight gain scenes. In Powell's The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943), the lead character gets significantly bigger during the course of the movie. Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro were curious how the actor Roger Livesey had achieved that effect. Powell informed them that Livesay had gotten bigger through careful use of camera angles, shaving his hair to make his head appear larger and judicious use of padding. Scorsese and De Niro felt that the film was too realistic to get away with that kind of effect so the decision was made for De Niro to physically bulk up through overeating. See more »
Tommy Como's hand position changes between shots when he has his arm around Jake when sitting at Tommy's table at the night club. See more »
Jake La Motta:
I remember those cheers / They still ring in my ears / After years, they remain in my thoughts. / Go to one night / I took off my robe, and what'd I do? I forgot to wear shorts. / I recall every fall / Every hook, every jab / The worst way a guy can get rid of his flab. / As you know, my life wasn't drab. / Though I'd much... Though I'd rather hear you cheer / When you delve... Though I'd rather hear you cheer / When I delve into Shakespeare / "A horse, a horse, my kingdom for a ...
[...] See more »
The film is in black and white, but during the opening credits, the title is in red letters. See more »
Jake La Motta's story is no doubt the best movie about boxing of all times together with Robert Wise's The Set-Up. Besides the legendary performance of Robert De Niro, there are many things in this film that will remain in my heart forever: the splendid black & white, the contrast between the slow moving scenes and the frenetic ones, the choice of the music and the sense of loss which entangles the whole movie. De Niro faces another "born loser" role (after Travis Bickle, John Rubin, Johnny Boy) and strikes again; Martin Scorsese is the most poetic director of the last 30 years.
93 of 133 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?