Director: Martin Scorsese.
Starring: Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster, Cybill Shepherd, Harvey Keitel. USA 1976. 114 mins.
Nursing various resentments, probably fuelled by a fear of social and sexual failure, Travis Bickle's (De Niro) attention turns to Iris (Foster), a 14-year-old prostitute, and he makes it his mission to save her. The film's expressionist images eloquently mirror Bickle's sense of the impoverished, tawdry, sometimes menacing New York of the mid-70s as a hell on earth. Scorsese's Palme d'Or winner remains one of the defining American movies of that decade, not only for its bravura flair, but also for the way it points to the troubled urban mood of those times by locating Bickle's psychotic rage in his ill-concealed racism, misogyny and anxieties concerning all-round impotence.