Friday, 3 August 2012

Taxi Driver (1976) - ★★★★

It's great, but is it a masterpiece? That is what I asked myself. After pondering this question, I decided that it didn't live up to its hype. This is because at times I was bored, and to be perfectly honest, I found it forgettable. Martin Scorsese is a brilliant director, and this is a fine film, but I wouldn't call it one of his best. I expected to be wowed, but alas that didn't happen.

Robert DeNiro was brilliant as always as Travis Bickle, a man on the edge of insanity as a result of his sleeping disorder and the scum that surrounds him. The scum is prostitutes, pimps, gays, murderers etc. He takes a job as a taxi driver so he has something to do while he's awake. He regularly visits X-Rated theater's to pass the time. I will say this, he is one of the most interesting characters in film history. Hearing his thoughts is quite disturbing because he is unstable and unpredictable, capable of anything. There is so much discontent with the world from him, so much contempt for the scum that walks the street. He feels purposeless. When a child prostitute named Iris (Jodie Foster) happens to jump into his cab to escape her pimp, he is given purpose. To save that girl from the scum surrounding her. The film ends with a big climax and an unexpected ending, but it wasn't enough to save this film from being dull.

I liked the themes that Scorsese explored and the raw way he presented the city. I loved the way he presented this mad man and made his insanity look just. I loved the "You talkin to me?" scene, which is one of the most recognizable in movie history. I loved the ending. That's why it pains me to say this. It was boring. I watch movies to be entertained. I compare it to eating a sandwich with all the toppings to make it one of the best sandwiches in the world. Sure it has all the ingredients, but it tastes bad. That's what this film did for me. A good film that wasn't entertaining.

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