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Drama, Thriller
IMDB rating:
Martin Scorsese
Robert De Niro as Travis Bickle
Jodie Foster as Iris
Harvey Keitel as Sport
Leonard Harris as Charles Palantine
Peter Boyle as Wizard
Diahnne Abbott as Concession Girl
Frank Adu as Angry Black Man
Gino Ardito as Policeman at Rally
Victor Argo as Melio (as Vic Argo)
Garth Avery as Iris' Friend
Harry Cohn as Cabbie in Bellmore
Copper Cunningham as Hooker in Cab
Brenda Dickson as Soap Opera Woman
Harry Fischler as Dispatcher
Storyline: Travis Bickle is an ex-Marine and Vietnam War veteran living in New York City. As he suffers from insomnia, he spends his time working as a taxi driver at night, watching porn movies at seedy cinemas during the day, or thinking about how the world, New York in particular, has deteriorated into a cesspool. He's a loner who has strong opinions about what is right and wrong with mankind. For him, the one bright spot in New York humanity is Betsy, a worker on the presidential nomination campaign of Senator Charles Palatine. He becomes obsessed with her. After an incident with her, he believes he has to do whatever he needs to to make the world a better place in his opinion. One of his priorities is to be the savior for Iris, a twelve-year-old runaway and prostitute who he believes wants out of the profession and under the thumb of her pimp and lover Matthew.
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Perfect movie making
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.
Taxi Driver (1976)-A Film With A Fatally Flawed Storyline
I watched Taxi Driver (1976) a couple of years ago & thought that it was a film with a fatally flawed storyline that didn't really deserve the big box office response & all the critical accolades it got.

However, now that I've just viewed Taxi Driver a second time, I must report that I STILL feel that it's a film with a storyline SO flawed that there is JUST NO WAY that I can consider it much more than a mediocre film, at best.

True enough, Taxi Driver is a film with some great qualities. The cinematography is exciting & innovative. The acting of the WHOLE cast is really superior.

However, all the great qualities of this film are for nothing, as far as I'm concerned, because, at least for me, if a film has a story line that is fundamentally flawed, then that just makes the rest of the film pointless. True enough, there plenty of fine films out there with improbable characters &/or improbable storyline elements where through good acting, & good direction they were able to pull off at least a semi-plausible, or semi-believable film. However, there are fatal flaws in the storyline of Taxi Driver that no amount of good acting or good direction would ever be able to overcome.

1) That cabbie Travis would take beautiful, educated, impeccably dressed, upscale campaign executive Betsy to a hard core porn movie on their first date is just STUPID. Look, Travis spent time in the Marines & he has a reputation of being the only cabbie who will take fares even to the roughest parts of NYC without getting into trouble, so he has lots of life experience & lots of "street smarts". Moreover, his social boldness in walking in off the street to talk to upscale Betsy, & his smooth, seductive language when he is wooing her in the campaign office & then again in the coffee shop belies a level of social sophistication that is beyond the narrative of this film. So why is a guy like Travis, who apparently has so much "on the ball" STUPIDLY taking an educated, upscale gal like Betsy to a hard core porn movie on their first date?

2) That Travis begins to get deranged & delusional after Betsy blows him off, & that he buys a number of guns, & starts to systematically stalk candidate Palatine & then, after his assassination attempt fails that he goes to rescue adolescent prostitute Iris, killing several guys in the process is pure BS. Having a BA & a MA in Psychology, I can tell you that mental illness just doesn't work that way. If Travis spent such a long time plotting the assassination of Palatine, then no simple foiled assassination attempt would allow him to focus his obsessiveness elsewhere. In reality, a paranoid borderline psychotic like Travis would just regroup for another attempt to kill the object that he has been stalking for so long, not just "turn on a dime" & choose a new object to kill.

3) That Travis is a deranged guy who has been plotting the murder of a Presidential candidate for a long time, & then starts a caring, empathetic relationship with the kid prostitute Iris is just from outer space. A guy who is as twisted as Travis, who spends 24/7 obsessed with killing a prominent person just doesn't take a "mental health vacation" & goes to express concern to a teenage hooker & has a rational conversation with her. SORRY, but the severe mental illness that Travis was exhibiting after Betsy blew him off just can't be switched on & off that way.

4) That Travis is hailed in the newspapers as a "hero" after he murders 4 bad guys while "rescuing" Iris is just STUPID. a) Replete with his Mohawk haircut, & unconscious to boot when the cops arrived after the big shootout, Travis would've been pegged as a bad guy who was in a shootout with other bad guys, & as a lowly NYC cabbie Good Luck talking your way out that corner. b) Even if the cops & the DA did recognize that Travis was not a bad guy but a misguided vigilante ala Bernard Goetz, chances are good that he'd still end up in prison for murder because not even bona fide cops have the legal authority to have the type of self initiated, unprovoked shoot out with the bad guys that Travis had.

5) That elegant, beautiful, educated, upscale, uptown Betsy actually seeks out the lowly cabbie Travis & makes overtures to him at the end of the film is UNREAL enough in itself but that Travis blew her off & just drove away leaving her standing in the street is just FANTASTIC, UNBELIEVABLE, & the stuff of children's FAIRY TALES not of an adult feature film.

For these reasons, & others, I must conclude that Taxi Driver is an otherwise OK film but with an ill conceived, bush league storyline that is not even worthy of a B-movie, much less international film awards. Obviously, writer Paul Schrader did no research on the complex personality that was the centerpiece of his screenplay.
A Major Borefest
What a sorry excuse of a movie and a waste of 2 hours of my life. Don't get me wrong, I like old movies, from the musicals, to the epics and any well acted movies. I bought the DVD thinking that this was a highly rated classic from the 70s. What it really is actually is a 2 hours borefest with dull acting and practically nothing happening for the first 65-70 mins of the movie. The story revolves around a lonely 26 years old taxi driver that was a loner and outcast and clearly have physcological issues. His ill-conceived atttempts to woo a young women named Betsy backfired and push him finally into mental instability.

Then as if suddenly realizing that there is clearly nothing much in both the script and the story line in this sorry excuse for a movie, the Director saw fit to inject the last 10 mins with a meaningless violent bloody gunfight. The entire movie is so meaningless that people must be blind to rate this as a classic.

I urge anyone thinking of renting or buying this movie to think twice. Don't throw away 2 hours of your life watching this piece of crap.
A Triumph of Pure Filmaking
Despite having an unsurpassed shoot-out bloodbath and despite having a timeless and touching storyline, the aspect that I like most about Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver is the music. Bernard Herrmann, who died shortly after completing the score, provides a melancholy feeling to the movie. This is perfect because Travis Bickle's loneliness is the heart of the story.

Robert DeNiro's performance in Taxi Driver as Travis Bickle is one of the best I have ever seen. DeNiro does every pause, smirk, and stare in exactly the right time. He transformed a despicable and psychotic character into a lonely and desperate man, who the audience can relate and understand. His scenes talking to himself in the mirror is entertaining, at the same time, terrifying.

Travis Bickle is a Vietnam veteran who cannot sleep at nights, so he decided to work long shifts at night driving a taxicab. As Travis drives around New York City, his feelings and emotion soon show: he is disgusted and angry at sleaze in the world, he hates pimps, and he is prejudiced against blacks.

Travis then falls to a beautiful campaign worker named Betsy (Cybill Shepherd), and he persuaded her to go on a date with him. Betsy is clearly intrigued by Travis' character, so she agreed. Their relationship is going well, but when Travis made a mistake on bringing her to an X-rated movie, she decided to ignore him.

In a later conversation with a fellow cab driver named Wizard (Peter Boyle), it is shown that Travis is on verge of going psychotic. The next sequences show Scorsese's genius. We clearly see how Travis slowly creates his plans and how he prepares himself. DeNiro's narration shows signs of breakdown, saying things like `here is a man who cannot take it anymore' and `loneliness has followed me all my life.'

Travis also befriends a twelve-year-old prostitute named Iris, played by a young Jodie Foster. Travis tries to convince her that she is hanging out with scums, and that she should be at school and making friends. One of the best acting scenes I have seen is when Travis talks with Iris in a restaurant. As Travis tries to convince Iris to give up prostitution, she manages to keep a steady face but clearly is suffering inside. Travis' emotion is clearly anger but he tries to hold it because he does not want to scare Iris. Foster and DeNiro play the scene with wonderful realism and emotion.

Taxi Driver is a good example of how great a film can be if it was made by talented persons. Paul Schrader's script is intense, Martin Scorsese's direction is watertight, Bernard Herrmann's music is beautiful, and the actors' acting is superb. Taxi Driver can relate to a lot of people and clearly is one of the greatest movies of all time.
Taxi Driver interprets Shakespeare
THE SICILIAN CONNECTION Taxi Driver and The Winter's Tale What follows comes from work in progress on how Scorsese's movie may cast light on Shakespeare's play.

At the end of Pasolini's film of Œdipus Rex the blind king walks out of his world into the streets of modern Bologna. If Leontes, King of the Sicilians,went missing, where would he reappear? The hero of Taxi Driver turns up in modern New York of 1976, as if out of nowhere, or maybe one of his own bad daydreams. He's looking for a job to suit an insomniac. Like the Great Gatsby, Travis Bickle seems to be be born of his vision of himself, and this casts doubt on the substance of both self and vision.

He gets a job driving a yellow cab. Then he falls for Betsy, a girl with class Then he goes out of his way to foul up by taking her to a blue movie. There, his attention is soon distracted from the real woman at his side . Betsy checks out in disgust. Later he calls her on the phone, but you can't tell whether there's really anyone at the other end. So his thoughts turn to 'saving' Iris, a twelve-year-old hooker who has also come out of nowhere, into his cab. Taxi Driver is set firmly in the eponymous mean streets of an earlier Scorsese movie, and before that, of The Godfather, the daddy of them all. Travis now has to kill some bad people, one of them Iris= trick, a Mafioso. Travis has already killed her pimp Matthew, or Sport - almost twice. In the street outside the tenement where she trades he shoots Sport in the belly before going inside to continue his righteous massacre. The pimp reappears in the hallway, alive and armed, and has to be gunned down again, as if to get it right. But Iris is saved, Betsy forgives Travis now that he=s a hero, and Travis survives. Or does he? Do they? Does any of it happen at all? Can such questions be asked of a work of fiction? In Taxi Driver the narrative viewpoint seems clear. The film opens and closes on Travis' brooding eyes. Intermittently he gives a running commentary in voice-over, which turns out to be the journal he keeps. Sometimes the screen shows things that appear to happen independently, without his knowledge. So these events seem to be 'real'. But they decrease in credibility. Travis sits in his taxi outside a building inside which a tender scene takes place between Iris and her pimp. And now Sport says: Come to me, baby, and he puts a record on the phonograph. He tells her: I'd like every man in the world to know what it is to be loved by you. Inadvertent humour can't get much bleaker. But whose joke is this? Travis buys a suitcaseful of artillery. He practises quick draws in the mirror. Sometimes he packs two guns, but he (as distinct from his reflection) is right-handed. Especially with his star weapon, a forty four magnum. In due course he uses it to shoot off some of the fingers of Iris' 'timekeeper'. Strangely, this has earlier and out of his hearing been described as a typical Mob punishment. Then, in reverse shot, we see the gun in Travis' left hand. He goes on to finish killing the pimp, the mobster and the timekeeper. And then himself - a death he has clearly intended or expected - except that now he=s all out of bullets. So he pretends. He points a finger at his own temple. It lets fall a single drop of blood. He gives a death=s head grin. His thumb works an invisible hammer. Bang, I'm dead.

Afterwards he gets police commendations, glowing press reports and grateful notes in what looks like his own handwriting. He loses the scar where a bullet creased him in the neck He grows back his hair, which he'd shaved to a Mohican crest. Finally exalted to a realm above human love and desire, Travis can patronise Betsy, who wistfully seeks him out, but can't get to him now. He's gone through the looking glass. Taxi Driver is perhaps the most chilling representation of psychic death ever to reach a universal audience. The question is: what sort of representation? In a Steinberg cartoon the subject, pencil in hand,is shown completing the picture which is himself. That picture is another of those 'impossible' objects which is possible because there it is. The work of art has become its own creator.

It's been said that a work of art goes about the world independently of its author's power to intend about it. In Taxi Driver it's as if the film itself has decided to dispense with the conventional markers that distinguish between what's 'really' happening and what's inside the hero's mind.

Such a work enacts the idea that all events, including events 'in the real world' are events in the consciousness; may only be events in the consciousness. We create the world, as they say, from moment to moment as we go along. If our dreams are allegories of the way we experience this world, then by extension our waking perception may be the same; except that it has to adjust itself - from moment to moment as we go along.

The movie screen, arena of the 'dream factory', is the obvious place to see this happening. So is the theatre. Shakespeare's The Winter's Tale is like a still, a tableau which suddenly comes to life out of a sort of Arcadian trance as in the Book of Genesis; and as in Genesis, with the touch of the serpent's tooth. It shows a man in torment because he's recreated the world as the hell in his own mind. A hell which he has to exorcise in blood. To understand Shakespeare's great work you could do worse than read it through the eyes of Taxi Driver.
Best movie of the Seventies, and one of the greatest of all time.
So much has been written and talked about 'Taxi Driver' that it seems almost redundant to add anything more. But watching it again the other night for the nth time I was, as I have been every single time I've seen it, struck by just how perfect this movie is. It is as powerful and disturbing now as it was twenty-five years ago. It has not only NOT aged, it gets better and more relevant every year. This is without doubt a modern classic, and one of the handful of truly great, timeless movies.

Scorsese and Schrader went on to make other great movies after this, both separately ('The King Of Comedy', 'Light Sleeper') and together ('Raging Bull', 'The Last Temptation Of Christ'), but this is easily the best movie of their careers. And Robert De Niro's too. He has yet to top his stunning performance here as the deeply disturbed and alienated Vietnam veteran Travis Bickle, cabbie and would be assassin. This character has not surprisingly entered movie legend.

Scorsese surrounds De Niro with a first rate supporting cast, including small but effective roles from Harvey Keitel ('Reservoir Dogs'), Peter Boyle ('Hardcore'), the underrated Victor Argo ('The King Of New York') and Joe Spinell ('Maniac'). Albert Brooks and Jodie Foster are also very good, and even Cybil Shepherd, the butt of many jokes, is fine as Bickle's obsession.

When you combine these actors, Schrader's outstanding script, and Scorsese's brilliant direction, with the stunning cinematography (Michael Chapman) and haunting score (Hitchcock fave Bernard Herrmann's final effort), you have yourself a truly unforgettable cinematic experience. If you haven't seen 'Taxi Driver' I urge you to do so immediately. It is a masterpiece, pure and simple.

At a Glance: Taxi Driver
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.


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.


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
So open to interpretation that the plot falls out...
The movie starts off with a mystery man walking into a dingy cab company and applying for a job. Something's off about him, he's friendly on the surface but underneath it there's something stiff and cold. He mentioned the Marine Corp, did something in Vietnam break him? Has he seen too many tragedies, and this waxen face is the most he can muster? Does he see the hookers and pimps, the human slime wandering the streets, and question what he was fighting for? And what about those pills he keeps taking – is there some underlying mental condition? Then, driving around in his cab he sees a woman. He stalks her to her job at a Senator's campaign office, and at first we think there's going to be some sort of conflict here, but then the camera pulls in to focus on her – and she's just as waxen and artificial as he is. Both of them speak with bizarre dialogue, just two degrees off of normal. Eventually he walks in, and they start dating.

Then, another twist – Senator Palpatine *ahem* Palantine gets into his cab one night. When the Senator asks what he cares about, he tries to explain the human vermin wandering the streets. You see fear in the Senator's eyes... but he responds with a greasy quote about working hard and changing the system.

At this point I was intrigued by the movie. I wanted to see how these characters would interact, conflict with each other; I wanted to know why the Taxi Driver was slightly off, and why this woman seemed to mimic him. Was the violence eventually going to be about some political or moral principle? Or will it be an emotional, shattering break down like some sort of Shakespearean tragedy? Unfortunately, none of this came to pass. For some reason he takes the woman on a date to a... porno theatre? In between orgy scenes and Dutch dialogue, there's a microscopic view of sperm fertilizing an egg. Whatever. The girl is initially hesitant, but accedes to watch the film, only to storm out in disgust five minutes later. She then disappears until the ending of the film.

When he gives up on calling her, he starts stalking a 12 year old prostitute. They go for coffee, and he tries to convince her to quit. She calls him a square.

Then he buys a whole bunch of guns and builds a nifty spring-mounted holster for his arm.

Then he talks to a Secret Service agent, then wanders off.

There's a long winded conversation between him and another cab driver – okay, I missed this part because I was busy talking about how many unnecessary scenes there were in this 115 minute long movie – but the bits I did catch didn't seem that critical.

Then we watch a love scene between the 12 year old prostitute and her pimp. It's romantic, and it goes on forever. We have no idea who his character is – he's just 'the pimp.' Then the Taxi Driver shows up planning to shoot Senator Palpatine, screws up and runs away. After that he goes and shoots the pimp, the hotel owner, and a Mafioso. He then tries to commit suicide (never giving the 12 year old the money he'd set aside for her in an earlier scene), but he's out of bullets. For five long, long minutes we watch the camera pan over the bloody scene.

Then we find out that he survived, he's a hero, and the girl went back to his parents. He's back to driving a cab, hanging out with his old cab-driving buddies (who were never fleshed out) then the girlfriend from earlier in the movie asks for a ride. He drives her home, they don't talk, and he doesn't charge her for the fare. Now the movies over.

This movie fills me with rage and confusion. None of the characters are fleshed out, most of them are unnecessary to what little story there is, it's completely unrealistic – not in an artistic 'suspension of disbelief' way, just a stupid way – and I can't discern any point to this movie. Why does he call the street people scum, yet go to watch porn movies every night? What's his fundamental problem? Is he fixed at the end of the movie, and if so, what's fixed about him? All of this build up of him becoming Rambo, only to shoot three guys – and even then, screw that up badly? What about the love scene between the pimp and the 12 year old? Why the politician? And for god's sake, why were there so many dragged out, unnecessary scenes where absolutely nothing happened? 'Open to Interpretation' means that you can use a film/novel/song as a platform to discuss feminism, politics, racism, violence, human nature, and anything else – but the art itself has a distinct strand to it. This movie does not. It's sort of like the late-era Beatles' songs where they just slapped together random words... only those were at least entertaining and contained emotion. This movie had none of that. The only emotion it successfully conveyed was alienation – because I'm sure as hell feeling alienated right now.

Deep existential questions are troubling my soul – if such ugliness as this can exist, than does beauty even matter anymore? This film is so ugly, sad, and broken that compared to it the most vigorous celebration of youth, love, and beauty is nothing but whistling in the dark as the universe dissolves into entropy, a featureless room-temperature void...

I don't know if I'll ever feel joy again. Even the blue soulful depths of melancholy are a sweet fruit which will forever be gone from my life. It's with my last act of will and human charity that I beseech you – if you love yourself, then please – Don't watch Taxi Driver!
A lonely Vietnam veteran who has insomnia spends his nights as a taxi driver in the dirty streets of New York, where he encounters a young prostitute who he tries to help make a difference.

This is a very good film and one of Martin Scorsese best (Goodfellas being my fave). An excellent portrayal from Robert De Niro as Travis Bickle the cabbie and good performances from Jodie Foster as the child prostitute Iris Steensman, Cybill Shepherd, Peter Boyle and Harvey Keitel as a pimp called Sport.

You actually get drawn into the isolation and anger that Travis is feeling towards these lowlifes and because of that you really feel sympathy for him. Though after a while the loneliness and the city really starts to haunt Travis's mind, causing violent instincts and paranoia.

This film is filled with such memorable lines e.g.Travis Bickle 'You talking to me? Well I'm the only one here.' and the many powerful scenes that stay in your head after it's finished. The hypnotic cinematography is a standout, as if your seeing the harsh & gritty New York streets and twisted people through the eyes of Travis when he is driving his cab. A great screenplay, a stunning score by Bernard Herrmann and a superb atmosphere created.

This is a brutally compelling and bleak look at a decaying and corrupt society of the 70's. An unsettling gem of a film.

An Enigmatic Masterpiece
If a picture is worth a thousand words then this movie (moving picture) is worth a million words, which is why it has probably generated at least a million words.

What can one say. The obvious: that "Taxi Driver" is great, it is. That it is a masterpiece, it is. What sets this film apart from so many other films, including great films, is that it is an enigma. Every time I watch this film I see something else, I notice something else, I feel something else, I wonder something else. And I am, clearly, not the only one who reacts to the film this way that is why it lends itself to endless speculation and discussion.

Since so many positive reviews have been made, rather than add my own red hot glowing review I thought I would address those people who have written that they don't like "Taxi Driver" because, they say, they find it dull and boring, hard to follow, etc. These people miss some important points about the film.

ONE, "Taxi Driver" is NOT an action film. If you want an action film watch "Die Hard" and its numerous sequels, or "Lethal Weapon" and its sequels, not to mention "Rambo" and thousands of other "action flicks." Nothing wrong with them, per se. Nothing wrong with liking them either. But is wrong to put down "Taxi Driver" because of what it is not.

TWO, "Taxi Driver" is about loneliness and loneliness is characterized by an almost crushing boredom and emptiness and Travis Bickle's character reflects that. His life is dull and boring, hardly anything happens to him and that is what "Taxi Driver" shows - Bickle's pathetic life.

THREE, some people say that they don't understand the plot, Bickle's attitudes and behaviour, etc. But that is because "Taxi Driver" is about a man who is profoundly emotionally disturbed although he (and his buddies) don't seem to know it. His actions aren't rational because he isn't rational. His actions make no sense because he makes no sense. Offhand, I can't think of any other film that has depicted mental illness as well as "Taxi Driver" and no film that attempts to show the world as seen by someone like Travis Bickle.

There you go: three reasons to address the most common criticisms of the film with one notable exception, its controversial ending, but THAT is a whole topic in itself which is just more proof of why "Taxi Driver" is so worthwhile - when viewers aren't sure what actually happens in the end (Is Travis hallucinating as he is dying? Is that what the slow moving overhead tracking shot suggests? Or does he really become a hero in the media and get realeased back into the world with his buddies? Etc, etc.) The questions and issues raised by "Taxi Driver" just go one and on.

Now if after reading the above you still don't think "Taxi Driver" is a great film, I can't help you. I am NOT saying you have to like (or love) "Taxi Driver" just appreciate it or at least acknowledge its greatness even if it isn't your cup of tea. Actually, I don't love "Taxi Driver" because it doesn't lend itself to love. It is too disturbing a picture precisely because it is way too close to reality, it cuts too close to the bone for my comfort (or rather, discomfort). It is not comfortable to watch because it isn't supposed to be. So if "Taxi Driver" makes you feel uncomfortable and uneasy it should because real life is uncomfortable and uneasy (unless you are born rich or something).

Finally, after watching it again for the nth time I have begun to notice (and feel) just how smooth "Taxi Driver" is. The overall feel and flow of the film is incredibly smooth in which not only each scene but each and every movement and gesture flows into the other imperceptibly. Sometimes I play back scences and sequences over and over to catch how it happens. In fact, I see it happening and still can't quite figure out how it is done but I have a hunch - DeNiro. DeNiro is just amazing in this film. If you haven't done it already, watch it with the remote in your hand and play some of the scenes in slow motion and you will SEE what I am talking about. Only DeNiro could do what he does. The sheer minimalism of his performance is just stunning. How he gets so much from so little never ceases to amaze me. DeNiro's performance in "Taxi Driver" only reminds me of what sports announcer Curt Gowdy exclaimed after one of Baltimore Orioles third baseman Brooks Robinson's incredible plays in the 1970 World Series,"This guy is another world!"
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