Taxi Driver 1976 film review | Book Addicts

Taxi Driver (film)

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Taxi Driver is a 1976 film starring Robert DeNiro, Jodie Foster, Harvey Keitel, and Cybill Shepherd.

2 out of 10 stars.  I don’t get the hype over this film at all.  It was pretty dumb and boring.

Travis Bickle (Robert DeNiro) is a 26 year old former Marine who gets a job driving a New York City cab.  His daily grind usually entails at least one couple having sex in his cab and he gripes about having to clean up semen from all over the seats.  He works 12 hour days then spends his evening at a local porn theater.

Travis eventually becomes obsessed with a young woman named Betsy (Cybill Shepherd) who works at a campaign office for a guy named Palantine.  She’s way out of Travis’s league, but he gives it a shot anyway and finally asks her out on a date.  Then he takes her to the porn theater he goes to.  She thought she was going to the movies.  She gets up, walks out, and that’s the end of that.  He becomes her stalker, determined to do something that will make him famous.  That goal turns out to be killing Palantine.

Meanwhile, one day he bumps into a 12 year old prostitute named Iris (Jodie Foster).  Iris’s pimp is an old sleazy guy named Sport (Harvey Keitel), but she loves him.  So when Travis attempts to get her away from Sport, it doesn’t work.  She goes right back to him.

As part of Travis’s plan, he illegally buys a 44 magnum.  He witnesses a convenience store robbery a few days later and shoots the shooter.  The store owner tells him to run (he’s got an illegal gun), so he does.  But he has a feeling of exhilaration he hasn’t had since the war.  He’s now hooked on the adrenaline.

Travis shaves his hair into a mohawk, which is a really dumb thing to do when you’re trying to blend in and get close enough to assassinate someone.  No surprise, he can’t get even close to Palantine and the secret service chase him away.  Determined to do something newsworthy, he goes to Iris’s home and kills the security guard, Mathew, who is guarding her.  He shoots the owner of the sleazy hotel that houses all the hookers and goes to shoot himself, but he’s out of bullets.  By the time the cops come he’s in a coma from being shot multiple times.

Traumatized by the shooting, Iris finally goes home.  Her parents write him a thank you.

Meanwhile, in his coma world he’s driving his taxi around and Betsy is his fare.

2 out of 10 stars.  No production values whatsoever and very boring.  The plot, quite frankly, made no sense at all.

 

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