Saturday, August 31, 2013

Taxi Driver - Martin Scorsese

Taxi Driver is one of the most revered movies in the United States. Winner of the Palme d'Or, and selected to be preserved as in the U.S. National Film Registry in 1994, Taxi Driver has been interpreted mostly as a movie about loneliness. In a way, Taxi Driver is also the father (or mother?) of movies like Kill Bill, Sin City, and basically any other movie about antiheros you can think about.

I recommend Taxi Driver because of its artistic value, but also because it shows, like most of the movies I talk about in this blog, how the World has changed in such a short period of time (Taxi Driver was filmed in 1976!). Here are some examples:
Had it been filmed after 9/11, Taxi Driver would have spent most of the time showing Travis Bickle planning how to circumvent the security of Senator Palantine. Instead, we see his psychological evolution from a lonely-but-sensitive-guy to a crazy vigilante.
The end of the movie would be totally different today. In the 70's people thought that redemption was a possibility in the secular World. Today, only believers in the after-life believe in redemption. The rest of humanity knows that redemption doesn't actually exist.
There is no chance in hell that a 13-year-old girl would be representing the role of a... 13-year-old girl in a R-rated movie today. Jodie Foster's particiipation in Taxi Driver is the equivalent of Nabokov's Lolita in the movies.
Taxi Driver also shows what a great actor Robert de Niro was. Why he decided to pass from doing cool stuff like Taxi Driver to Meet the Fockers (and Little Fockers) is one of the biggest mysteries to me. What a way to destroy a legacy...

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