Friday, February 10, 2012

13. Taxi Driver (1976)

Taxi Driver is a meditation on Nihilism. Nothing Travis does seems to matter. He desperately tries to make a difference, but, like the ancient myth of Sisyphus, who had to push a boulder all the way up a hill only to watch it roll back down everyday, Travis isn’t making any progress in life. He’s a mere taxi driver, and he needs something to do. Finally, he works out, shaves his head and purchases a gun to kill a presidential candidate. He’s not even political, he just wants to kill someone important so that he’ll be important. Luckily, fate intervenes, and a 12 year old girl who’s being used as a prostitute needs his help. For once, Travis can be important, without any artificiality. Taxi Driver is a poetic but disturbed vision.

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