Taxi Driver (1976) / Drama-Thriller

MPAA Rated: R for strong sexuality, nudity, bloody violence, disturbing images, and pervasive language
Running Time: 113 min.

Cast: Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster, Cybill Shepherd, Harvey Keitel, Albert Brooks, Peter Boyle
Small role: Martin Scorsese

Director: Martin Scorsese
Screenplay: Paul Schrader
Review published December 26, 1997

A discharged Vietnam vet (De Niro, The Godfather Part II) works as a cab driver in the tough streets of New York City. He's antisocial and not very savvy about the way the world works, but manages to eke out a workable life for himself. He begins to become obsessed with a woman (Shepherd, The Last Picture Show) working for a presidential candidate, and manages to get her to go out with him. When she ultimately rejects him, he meets a preteen hooker (Foster, Foxes) whom he tries to help. With delusions of love fueling thoughts on assassinating the candidate, he begins to slip into madness.

Taxi Driver is one of those rare films that actually gets better with each successive viewing. Deep and multifaceted, this is one of the best films of the 70s, and a stroke of genius on the part of director Scorsese (Mean Streets, New York New York). De Niro and Foster deliver brilliant and forever memorable performances, and Bernard Herrmann's (Marnie, Psycho) score is one of his best.

Funny, tragic, moving and shocking -- a near masterpiece of pent-up angst cinema.

 Qwipster's rating:

1998 Vince Leo