Restless Robert De Niro, an ex-Marine, becomes a New York Cab driver. Unable to sleep, even after long shifts, he frequents porno movie houses and observes the human garbage which he comes to hate, particularly the hookers and their breed. De Niro is attracted to Cybill Sheperd, campaign worker for Presidential candidate Leonard Harris. She's fascinated by De Niro's philosophy, while her co-worker Albert Brooks immediately dislikes him. When De Niro takes her to a sex film, she becomes disgusted and refuses to see him again. De Niro tries to get advice from fellow cabby Peter Boyle, then decides to arm himself. He becomes friendly with underage hooker Jodie Foster and attempts to rescue her from her pimp and lover, Harvey Keitel. With a Mohican-type haircut, De Niro nearly becomes an assassin at a Harris rally. In a bloody climax, he frees Foster by killing Keitel, Murray Moston and mafia collector Robert Maroff. Badly wounded, he recovers and gives Sheperd a ride in his cab.
Tie in with the Bantam Books paperback edition of the screenplay. The names of Oscar winner De Niro and of Scorsese, plus the critics' raves should do the trick.
On every street in every city in this country there's a nobody who dreams of being somebody. He's a lonely forgotten man desperate to prove that he's alive. Columbia 112 mins.