Taxi Driver

Taxi Driver ★★★★

There are seventies films that capture the era perfectly, showing it's grimy underbelly and at times subversive sleazy paranoia that De Niro's Travis Bickle manages to embody like no other. As a movie it's a psychological thriller that takes you down a dark alley where the lines of right and wrong get blurred by a society on the brink of the abyss. Few films offer such a pessimistic view of New York and the cesspit it becomes when the neon lights come on and the creatures of the night appear on the streets. An indictment of seventies America? Probably, Scorsese picks apart the American dream with a taxi driver who's had enough, and in De Niro he had a paranoid and edgy delusional loner who fitted the part beautifully. That unfortunately is the only beautiful thing in Scorsese's film. It's grim, it's violent, and leaves you needing a shower after watching, and that's not to say it isn't an extremely good movie, but again one that fits into the admire more than love bracket. I'd only seen this once before, about seven years ago, and it was an attack on the senses. This time I was more prepared for the teenage prostitutes, the violence, the date at a porn film, and that feeling of desperation that seeps from every pore of a film that lingers.

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