“Taxi Driver” is a beautiful portrayed of an individual who tries to do things his way, in the hectic and dangerous New York of the ’70’s. He already isn’t a stable person to begin with (he’s a Vietnam veteran) but through his loneliness and due to his own personal views and idea’s of society and the world, he gets more and more consumed by the rotten society until he feels it is enough and decides to take matters into his own hands.
Beauty of the movie is that it gets interpreted by everyone in his or hers own way. Everyone sees some different things in the story and characters. I think this also was what writer Paul Schrader and director Martin Scorsese had in mind, while making this movie.
The story takes us into the world of Travis Bickle. We begin to see society through his eyes and we more and more begin to understand the character as the movie progresses. It makes his character not only a understandable one but also a very realistic one. Nothing in this movie is overdone or made to look better or worser than it is in real life.
The movie is made extra powerful through the performances of the cast. Robert De Niro is a sensational main lead and the supporting cast is also real great. Some well known actors that were still unknown at the time of this movie make an appearance, such as a very young Jodie Foster, Albert Brooks, Victor Argo and an almost unrecognizable young Harvey Keitel.
The entire movie is sensational- and with lots of style directed by Martin Scorsese, who knows how to set the right mood and atmosphere. The simple- but effective and realistic from Michael Chapman and the musical score by Bernard Herrmann (his last) also add to the atmosphere. Also of course the fact that New York City serves as the backdrop for this movie, gives the movie a typical dark and gritty feeling and atmosphere. Everything is slowly but powerfully build up in the movie and every sequences plays a significant role. A result of this is that the movie is filled with some unforgettable sequences, of which the famous ‘You talking’ to me?’ sequence is the best known. But also the violent ending leaves a lasting impression.
It’s still a movie that applies today, after 30 years now. Because lets face it, what exactly has been changed in society compared to 30 years ago and now? The subject and meaning of the movie could still apply to present day. It makes “Taxi Driver” a timeless and important movie that is a perfect reflection of society and already is worthy of the ‘classic’-status.
Yet another essential ’70’s viewing.