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,
An eager and idealistic young attorney defends an Alcatraz prisoner accused of murdering a fellow inmate. The extenuating circumstances: his client had just spent over three years in solitary confinement.
A young boy dies from a stray bullet during a shootout between a cop and mob family member who had previously been supiciously given probabtion, only to break its terms. New York's Deputy Mayor, Kevin Calhoun starts digging for information. Written by
When Kevin goes to use the pay phone in the diner after Marybeth leaves, he dials successfully without putting any change in the phone first. See more »
Mayor John Pappas:
Your power? What good are you to the people without it? But down deep you know there's a line you can't cross, and after a thousand trades and one deal too many, the line gets rubbed out.
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I liked this neglected movie quite a bit, for a number of reasons.
The characters. I found them believable, real, with some depth, in conflict. Not cardboard, cartoon-like. I found that I could really identify with and care about them.
The story. I thought it was really interesting and realistic. The behind-the-scenes look at political machinations was exciting. I tend to like movies without special effects, that are not unrealistic fantasies. ("Ordinary People" generally comes to my mind.) I thought that this movie simply took real-life type people, put them in interesting situations, filled with conflict, and had us watch them deal with the problems they were in.
I also think the movie had a message for us, in terms of right and wrong. In fact, it's downright Shakespearian. (Contrast this with another Al Pacino movie, "Heat", where the criminals are portrayed just as sympathetically as the law enforcement officers, and there is no inkling at all that there is anything morally wrong with armed robbery. I'm uncomfortable with that.)
It's refreshing to see a movie in this day and age without gratuitous sex, violence, bombs and bullets, profanity.
On a cinematic level, I found the directing, acting (the entire cast) and production to be first rate.
I realize that many, many people (possibly the large majority) don't see things as I've described here. But if what I've written resonates, then you'll probably like this movie a lot.
29 of 34 people found this review helpful.
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