7.5/10
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12 user 7 critic

Taksi-Blyuz (1990)

Ivan is old Russia: thick, dour, hard-working, often brutish; he misses Communism. He drives a taxi and one night meets Alexi, a new Russian, a musician, an alcoholic, irresponsible. Alexi ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Lyosha
Pyotr Zaychenko ...
Shlykov
Vladimir Kashpur ...
Old Nechiporenko
Natalya Kolyakanova ...
Christina
Hal Singer ...
Himself
Elena Safonova ...
Nina, Liocha's Wife
...
Administrator
Evgeniy Gerchakov ...
Bald Musician in the Taxi
Dmitri Prigov ...
Writer Typing in the Train
Igor Zolotovitskiy ...
Petyunchik
Valeri Khlevinsky ...
Fat Kolya
Elena Stepanova ...
Smart Young Girl
Vladimir Sterzhakov ...
Musician in the Taxi
Konstantin Afonsky ...
Long-Haired Mechanic
Aleksandr Buyanov ...
Passenger with Newspaper
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Storyline

Ivan is old Russia: thick, dour, hard-working, often brutish; he misses Communism. He drives a taxi and one night meets Alexi, a new Russian, a musician, an alcoholic, irresponsible. Alexi stiffs Ivan for the fare, so Ivan tracks him down and a love-hate relationship ensues. When Alexi lets the bath water run over in Ivan's flat and Ivan must pay 500 rubles for repairs, he tries to force Alexi into day labor to repay him. It's hopeless. Then, suddenly, Alexi is discovered, goes on a jazz tour of America, becomes a celebrity, and returns in triumph. Ivan longs to renew the friendship, and it looks as if he may get what he wants. Written by <jhailey@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

18 January 1991 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Taxi Blues  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

$169,410 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Official submission of Soviet Union for the 'Best Foreign Language Film' category of the 63th Academy Awards in 1991. See more »

Goofs

In the opening sequence, the guy with the blue palm tree shirt waves his hands hypnotist style in front of a woman. Her position in the seat changes between shots. See more »

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User Reviews

Who's Really in Control?
5 May 2004 | by (Clinton, New York) – See all my reviews

*Please note: This review discusses many key events of the film, including the end. Do not read if you have not seen the movie!!!

Taxi Blues is a film about control. It isn't, however, as simple as it initially seems. At the film's conclusion, the audience is left to ask, "Who's really controlling whom?"

At the beginning of this film, Chlykov has complete control of his life. He manages his cab, and his side job of selling alcohol, with an iron fist and the facial expression to match. He is the master of his domain and no one in his or her right mind would dare to question his authority in any way.

The problem is that Lyosha is not in his right mind. His life is careening out of control and he has one priority. Alcohol. From the minute that he requests his first bottle from Chlykov, their lives become irrevocably entangled. In the beginning, it is very clear where the power lies. As the film continues, however, it becomes harder and harder to tell who is controlling whom. Although he does not seem to realize it, Chlykov's life begins to revolve around the very man he seeks to reform. As a result, aspects of his own life start to slip from his control.

For example, when Lyosha begins to seduce his girlfriend, Chlykov, in a desperate attempt to prove his authority, smashes Lyosha's saxophone and then engages Christina in an aggressive sexual act against her will. For those few minutes, Chlykov is free of his self-induced commitment to Lyosha. However, his freedom is short-lived. A few minutes later the phone rings and he is soon back at the jail to meet Lyosha, once again putting his own life on hold.

By the end of the film, the roles have reversed. Lyosha gets his life together, at least temporarily, and is on top of the world as a beloved, world-renowned musician. Chlykov's life, however, is reminiscent of Lyosha's at the beginning of the film. He severs connections with his girlfriend, his friends and his once structured existence. It is no coincidence that in the last scenes of the film, Chlykov is in a speeding car, spinning wildly out of control.


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