Taxi Driver



Portrait of a very disturbed man; NOT for kids.
Popular with kidsParents recommend
  • Review Date: November 29, 2005
  • Rated: R
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 1976
  • Running Time: 112 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The main character is an unhinged psychopath.


Fetishization of guns and a graphically violent shootout.


One young character is a prostitute, porn theatres serve are repeatedly shown.

Not applicable
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Drugs are offered for sale and discussed, but not accepted or used.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this movie is a disturbing chronicle of psychopath. It has graphic violence and unnerving suspense. The voiceover narration of the main character is filled with obscenities and racial slurs. A young teen prostitute is a central character, and she has affection for her pimp, which is made clear. The final shootout scene is bloody and shocking, and it's followed by a somewhat confounding epilogue where the police praise main character's violent actions.

What's the story?

TAXI DRIVER centers on Travis Bickle (Robert De Niro), an unhinged young man who has moved to New York following service in the military. In the city, he finds himself disgusted by the crime and \"filth\" on the streets. Unable to sleep at night, he takes a job as a night-time taxi driver - a job that brings him into close contact with many of the city's undesirable elements. Although he tries to connect with the people he meets (including a pretty campaign worker played by Cybill Shepard and a teen prostitute played by Jodie Foster), his awkwardness keeps him from succeeding. Rapidly, his mental state deteriorates, and he begins to fantasize about cleaning up corruption on his own. Ultimately, he enacts his warped idea of vigilante justice with some rather graphic and surprising consequences.

Is it any good?


Teenagers curious about extremely violent films are likely to learn of this film's reputation, especially the tour-de-force performance of Robert De Niro. Taxi Driver was the first major collaboration between De Niro and director Martin Scorsese. Working from Paul Schrader's script, the resulting film is deeply affecting in its ability to bring the viewer into the frame of mind of a violent and volatile social misfit. Feeding off a general sense of unrest that many young people will experience in life, the film does an amazing job of depicting Bickle as a real human being with problems, rather than a cartoonish villain. In Travis' mind, his morals are well tuned, obligating him to turn crusader for his own version of decency. It is hard to wholly cast him as the "bad guy," and so much moral ambiguity exists.

The imagery of New York City at night almost functions as a second main character, with striking visuals and all sorts of unsavory characters. A truly stunning masterpiece that helped to solidify an actor/director relationship that went on to produce many other great films.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the main character's motivations. Are there any clues given to the roots of his violent tendencies? Were his final very violent actions justified given his motive to "save" Iris? What do you think the filmmakers were trying to say about the media's influence on people's behavior? Do you think the media have an affect on yours?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:January 1, 1976
DVD release date:May 4, 1999
Cast:Cybill Shepherd, Peter Boyle, Robert De Niro
Director:Martin Scorsese
Studio:Sony Pictures
Run time:112 minutes
MPAA rating:R
MPAA explanation:language and violence.

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  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Parent of a 3 and 7 year old Written bykelldeal October 12, 2009

good for ages 20 and not for tweens!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking
Parent of a 10 and 13 year old Written bySuperParent August 29, 2009

A Martin Scorsese Classic

Robert De Niro is Terrific as the Taxi Driver, Martin Scorses Classic! but does involve a 12-year old prostitute and a man taking his girlfriend to a porn theater! we see man's buttcheek's during that scene, but other than that its great, but it does contain graphic violence at the very end of the film, we a man's hand get blown off with a gun and we see blood spurt from the missing part of the hand, we also see a man get shot in the face several times, we see blood spurt from his face, and then we see a man get his hand stabbed, we see blood spurt from the wound, and then he is shot in the head, we see blood and brains spray from the head onto the wall, we also see a man shot in the neck, we see blood spurt from the wound, this ending contains lots of blood and brutality
What other families should know
Great messages
Parent of a 15 year old Written byThoughtCriminal May 15, 2011

Good for mature teens

Amazing movie, This has always been one of my personal favorites. The reviewers use of the word "Psychopath" to describe Travis bothers me though. He is not a psychopath. Psychopaths have no emotion and Travis clearly does. I don't see his behavior to be psychotic either. Maybe anti-social but there is nothing wrong with that.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex


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