09 July 2011
Again, another film I wish I'd had more time when I saw it to talk about, because there's so much to say. I guess there's nothing I might say about Taxi Driver that six million college kids haven't already said before, but still.
This is a film I have only seen a handful of times, actually. All the major plot-points and sequences stuck with me pretty well, but I'd forgotten the permeating sense of melancholy the film has. I remember it makes you a little uneasy, and you never quite know if you should like/side with Travis Bickle or loathe/suspect him, but I don't remember feeling this sorry for him last time I watched it. More than anything, Taxi Driver strikes me as one of the saddest films I've seen in a long time -- and it actually reminds me even more of Observe and Report than I expected it to -- a film that, when I saw it, I tried to convince people wasn't a farcical comedy, but a disturbing black-comedy/character-driven absurdist tragedy in the vein of Big Fan or Taxi Driver).
Not scary (I mean, it has its moments). Not thrilling (again, same). Not funny (I could go on). This film is sad. Bickle was so broken from before this starts, there was nowhere to go but down, and we have no choice but to watch him lose it.