You talkin’ to me? 5 Stars

Martin Scorsese’s masterpiece, Taxi Driver, finally arrives on 4K UHD Blu-ray in Sony’s 6-movie Columbia Classics 4K Ultra HD Collection Vol 2.

Taxi Driver (1976)
Released: 09 Feb 1976
Rated: R
Runtime: 114 min
Director: Martin Scorsese
Genre: Crime, Drama
Cast: Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster, Cybill Shepherd
Writer(s): Paul Schrader
Plot: A mentally unstable veteran works as a nighttime taxi driver in New York City, where the perceived decadence and sleaze fuels his urge for violent action by attempting to liberate a presidential campaign worker and an underage prosti
IMDB rating: 8.2
MetaScore: 94

Disc Information
Studio: Sony
Distributed By: N/A
Video Resolution: 2160p HEVC w/HDR
Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
Audio: English 2.0 DTS-HDMA, English 5.1 DTS-HDMA, Spanish 5.1 DD, Other
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French, Other
Rating: R
Run Time: 1 Hr. 54 Min.
Package Includes: UHD, Blu-ray, Digital Copy
Case Type: 2-disc UHD keepcase with slipcover
Disc Type: UHD
Region: All
Release Date: 10/12/2021
MSRP: $164.99

The Production: 4.5/5

I have always found Martin Scorsese’s Taxi Driver a difficult film to watch. It is a dark, gritty character study of Travis Bickle (Robert DeNiro), a lonely and socially inept US Marines veteran with underlying mental health issues. Suffering from insomnia, he takes a job as a taxi driver, mostly working nights getting everyone from politicians, the social elite, and lowlifes around New York City. The movie is seen through Travis’ eyes, as he encounters disappointment, disillusionment, and isolation in the seedy parts of the Big Apple, eventually taking matters into his own hands. All of the major performances in the film are rock solid, DeNiro’s career-defining role as Travis, Cybill Shepherd as Betsy the campaign worker who is ultimately repulsed by Travis, Albert Brooks as Betsy’s over-protective co-worker, Jodie Foster as the teenage runaway and prostitute Iris, Harvey Keitel as Iris’ pimp, Leonard Harris as Presidential candidate Charles Palantine, and Peter Boyle as Wizard the “wise” cab driver. The film solidified an ongoing partnership between Scorsese, DeNiro, and screenwriter Paul Schrader. For a more detailed analysis of the film, check out Richard Gallagher’s review of Sony’s 2011 Blu-ray release.

Video: 5/5

3D Rating: NA

Taxi Driver is perhaps the oldest of the 4K scans in Sony’s 6-film Columbia Classics 4K Ultra HD Collection Volume 2. The original camera negative was scanned in 4K back in 2010 for its 35th Anniversary screening at the Berlin Film Festival on 2011, and that transfer was later released in 2013 as part of the studio’s “Mastered in 4K” series of Blu-rays (that disc has been included in this set), and has been available in 4K digitally for many years. For its UHD physical media debut, Grover Crisp’s team at Sony took that 4K master and added high dynamic range in both HDR10 and Dolby Vision, improving the contrast and deepening the level of shadow detail in the dark streets of New York. Colors are more vibrant without appearing overly saturated, giving the picture a real pop without sacrificing the darker undertones of the story.

Audio: 5/5

This is the same DTS-HD MA 5.1 track included on previous Blu-ray releases, a track that was originally mono in its 1976 theatrical release, remixed in stereo in 1995 after locating the original 4-track stereo recordings of Bernard Herrmann’s score, and then remixed again in 5.1 for the 35th Anniversary release in 2011. This is a front-heavy presentation (due to its mono roots), with dialogue emanating mostly from the center channel, with Bernard Herrmann’s score spread across the front soundstage and extended to the surrounds. Dialogue is clear and understandable throughout.

Special Features: 5/5

Sony has included all of the special features from the 40th Anniversary Blu-ray release in 2016, moving all of the content from the bonus disc to the UHD disc or this release. Unfortunately, the audio commentaries are only accessible on the Blu-ray edition.

UHD Disc:
Making “Taxi Driver” (upscaled 1080p; 70:55)

Intro to Storyboards by Martin Scorsese (1080p; 4:32)

Storyboard to Film Comparison (1080p; 8:21)

Photo Galleries (1080p; 9:27)

**NEW** 20th Anniversary Re-Release Trailer (1080p; 1:28)

Blu-ray Disc:
Original 1986 Criterion Collection Audio Commentary with Director Martin Scorsese and Writer Paul Schrader

Audio Commentary with Professor Robert Kolker

Audio Commentary with Writer Paul Schrader

Tribeca Film Festival 40th Anniversary Q&A (1080p; 41:56)

Producing “Taxi Driver” (1080i; 9:53)

God’s Lonely Man (1080i; 21:42)

Influence and Appreciation: A Martin Scorsese Tribute (1080i; 18:30)

Taxi Driver Stories (1080i; 22:22)

Martin Scorsese on “Taxi Driver” (1080i; 16:54)

Travis’ New York (1080i; 6:15)

Travis’ New York Locations (1080i; 4:45)

Theatrical Trailer (1080p; 3:10)

Digital Copy: An insert contains a code to redeem a digital copy on Movies Anywhere. At the time of this review, my code redeemed on Movies Anywhere, Vudu, and Prime Video in 4K (no HDR) with Dolby Digital 5.1 audio; Apple TV/iTunes in 4K with HDR10/Dolby Vision and Dolby 5.1 audio.

Overall: 5/5

Although available digitally in 4K for a few years, the use of HDR takes Taxi Driver up another notch in visual perfection in its first release on UHD physical media.

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Published by

Todd Erwin

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noel aguirre

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Joined
Nov 28, 2011
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Location
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Real Name
noel
The neon and car lights of 1970’s NYC should look amayzing with that HDR added- not like film itself mind you but amayzing. :rolleyes:
So much for 1970’s grittiness/ realness. I will watch w bated breath.
 

roxy1927

Screenwriter
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Jul 10, 2018
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vincent parisi
I don't remember movies at this point in time popping.
This is where I spent my teen years, Times Square in this era, so it is practically home movies for me. I wasn't totally happy. I would have liked to have known the deuce and midtown in earlier incarnations but compared to what it is now it was the Elysian Fields.
I saw lots of prostitutes and pimps but never one as young as Foster.