Robert De Niro’s Rupert Pupkin is Jake La Motta without his fists. In Raging Bull, De Niro and Scorsese had things boiled down, so that Jake’s entire character was the chip on his shoulder. This time there’s no chip.
By far his most ambitious film to date technically and in the scope of its references, Taxi Driver shows Scorsese's urgency working at full throttle—to the film's considerable success and less considerable failure.
Pauline Kael reviews 'New York Stories', the 1989 anthology film consisting of three shorts with the central theme being New York City. Episodes directed by Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola and Woody Allen.
by Gavin Smith Gavin Smith: What was it that drew you to the GoodFellas material? Martin Scorsese: I read a review of the book; basically it said, "This is really the way it must he." So I got the book in galleys and started really enjoying it because of the [...]
Scorsese's technique of "freezing” objects generates a particular method of cinematic exposition in which characters and objects are portrayed in a moment between movement and non-movement; this “moment” is the bridge between potential behavior and stasis. The "thing” is frozen or suspended on the screen, and the possibility of either stasis or experience emerges from this momentary suspension.
In Taxi Driver, New York City is a steaming, polluted cesspool and Travis Bickle’s cab a drifting bathysphere from which he can peer at the “garbage and trash” which obsess him: whores, pimps, junkies, wandering maniacs, maggotty streets, random violence.
Martin Scorsese’s Mean Streets is a true original of our period, a triumph of personal filmmaking. It has its own hallucinatory look; the characters live in the darkness of bars, with lighting and color just this side of lurid. It has its own unsettling, episodic rhythm and a high-charged emotional range that is dizzyingly sensual.
Novelist of ‘Nothing Natural’, Jenny Diski, watches a video of the first ‘Cape Fear’ and the Scorsese remake - and compares them
The movie is a disgrace: an ugly, incoherent, dishonest piece of work. The original picture, directed by a skillful journeyman, J. Lee Thompson, is memorable without being especially artful.