Taxi Driver: Limited Edition Steelbook 4K Review

By Allison Rose   X Formly Known as Twitter
3 Min Read

Anchored by De Niro's chilling performance, it is easy to see why it ranks in the top 100 films of all time.

Taxi Driver: Limited Edition Steelbook 4K Review
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"You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me?" Arguably one of the most famous lines ever uttered on film. 

The year was 1976.  The actor was Robert De Niro (Raging Bull). The movie was Taxi Driver.  The director, Martin Scorsese(Goodfellas) . Nominated for four Academy Awards and seven BAFTAs, it is listed on several lists of the 100 best movies of all time and was inducted into the National Film Registry in 1994.

Vietnam War veteran Travis Brickle (De Niro) had chronic insomnia, so he decided to become a cab driver in the "city that never sleeps". He also frequented adult movie theaters and became fed up with the "Urban Decay".  He also became obsessed with Senator Palatine's campaign volunteer named Betsy (Cybill Shepherd; Moonlighting) and continually saw a young prostitute named Iris (Jodie Foster; The Silence of the Lambs) around town who was manhandled by her pimp.

Feeling fed up Travis begins a regiment of physical training and buys four handguns from a black-market dealer.  At home, he practiced using the weapons and modified them to conceal under his clothing.  He scoped out Palatine rallies and made notes of his security detail since he formulated a plan to assassinate Palatine.  He also convinced Iris to stop prostituting herself. After his assassination attempt was foiled, he went to Iris and got into a gunfight with her pimp and the john who hired her.  He managed to kill them but was severely wounded and fell into a coma while he sat down next to Iris.

The true gem of Taxi Driver is the cast.  De Niro gives one of his many memorable performances as Travis and you can watch as he falls deeper and deeper into his psychotic state.  Foster is perhaps even better than De Niro and certainly matches him scene for scene.  Watching these two actors work together is like watching an acting master class.

The 2160p video quality is hit or miss.  Some scenes are bright, vibrant, and clean while a few are blurry and dingy.  Overall, it looks great but it seems as if the people doing the restoration may have missed a scene or two.

The DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 is no different than the previously released track.  The audio is good and has some depth of field but I wonder what it might have sounded like in Atmos.

The only new feature of this release is the steelbook case.  Striking photos both outside and inside the case capture the essence of Taxi Driver beautifully. The previously released extras included in the combo pack include Making Taxi Driver Documentary, Storyboard to Film Comparisons with Martin Scorsese Introduction, Animated Photo Galleries, 20th Anniversary Re-Release Trailer, 40-Minute Taxi Driver Q&A featuring Martin Scorsese, Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster and Many More Recorded Live at the Beacon Theatre in New York City at the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival, Commentary with Director Martin Scorsese and Writer Paul Schrader Recorded by the Criterion Collection, Commentaries by Writer Paul Schrader and by Professor Robert Kolker, Martin Scorsese on Taxi Driver, Influence and Appreciation: A Martin Scorsese Tribute, Producing Taxi Driver, God's Lonely Man, Taxi Driver Stories, Travis' New York, Travis' New York Locations, and Theatrical Trailer.

It is easy to see why critics of 2019's Joker compared it to Taxi Driver as both have the violence and the erratic behavior of men living in New York City.  However, as Taxi Driver was first, it offered something very different that drew audiences and critics to it with an almost morbid curiosity.  Anchored by De Niro's chilling performance, it is easy to see why it ranks in the top 100 films of all time.

Grade: B+

Directed By:
MPAA Rating: R
Running Time: 114 minutes
Distributed By: Sony Pictures

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For more information about Taxi Driver visit the FlickDirect Movie Database. This release has been provided to FlickDirect for review purposes. For more reviews by Allison Rose please click here.

Taxi Driver images are courtesy of Sony Pictures. All Rights Reserved.

FlickDirect, Allison   Rose

Allison Rose, a Senior Correspondent and Critic at FlickDirect, is a dynamic presence in the entertainment industry with a communications degree from Hofstra University. She brings her film expertise to KRMS News/Talk 97.5 FM and broadcast television, and is recognized as a Tomatometer-Approved Critic. Her role as an adept event moderator in various entertainment industry forums underscores her versatility. Her affiliations with SEFCA, the Florida Film Critics Circle, and the Online Film Critics Society highlight her as an influential figure in film criticism and media.


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