Monday, September 27, 2010

"You talkin' to me?" Brother Production Cab Driver "Travis" Review III

Travis Bickle: "You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? You talkin' to me? Then who the hell else are you talking... you talking to me? Well I'm the only one here. Who the f**k do you think you're talking to?"

The quote "You talkin' to me?" delivered by Travis Bickle, played by Robert De Niro in the 1976 movie "Taxi Driver" has become a pop culture icon, and made De Niro a star. "Taxi Driver" is particularly important to De Niro's career; his iconic performance as Travis Bickle shot him to stardom and forever linked De Niro's name with Bickle's famous "You talkin' to me?" monologue, which De Niro largely improvised.

This is the Brother Production Crazy Killer Collection Series 170 1/6 scale 12-inch Cab Driver "Travis" with Mohawk haircut, sunglasses, M-65 army jacket over a white shirt, blue denim pants / jeans with belt and buckle, and leather cowboy boots.

This SPECIAL EDITION version also came with the other jacket that Bickle wore in the film, a World War II US Army Tanker jacket with the Gorilla patch on the arm which was covered in my earlier post.

Oliver Stone believes he was one of the models for Travis Bickle, pointing out that he was being taught by Scorsese at NYU film school at the time, and like Travis he was a Vietnam veteran turned N.Y.C. cab driver and wore his olive drab army coat while on duty.

Brother Production 1/6 scale Cab Driver Travis Bickle's M65 Army jacket in "Taxi Driver" is complete with the very same patches and the "We Are The People" Presidential campaign button.

After being dumped by Betsy (Cybill Shepherd), Bickle's thoughts begin to turn violent. After shaving his head into a Mohawk haircut, he attends a public rally where he attempts to assassinate Senator Palantine, who is running for President on a platform of dramatic social change.

It's most interesting that George Lucas' evil Sith Lord in Star Wars was Senator and later Emperor Palpatine. The name is too close to be a coincidence since Scorsese and Lucas are good friends.

Failing to assassinate Senator Palantine, Bickle then drives to "Alphabet City" (an area of New York's Lower East side consisting of Avenues A through E) where he shoots and kills a pimp named Sport (Harvey Keitel), his bouncer, and a customer who is visiting Iris (Jodie Foster), a 12-year-old child prostitute whom he is trying to set free.

Travis Bickle (Robert De Niro) had bought four handguns from "Easy Andy" (Steven Prince), the illegal gun salesman. Brother Production has included all four guns in their Crazy Killer Collection Series 170 1/6 scale Cab Driver "Travis" boxed set: Smith & Wesson Model 36, Astra Constable, Smith & Wesson Escort and Smith & Wesson Model 29 .44 Magnum. Also included is the bayonet which Bickle attaches to his boot with duct tape and the drawer slide arm mount for the Smith & Wesson Escort. All four weapons already covered HERE and HERE

After being injured, Travis then calmly tries repeatedly to fire a bullet into his own head from under his chin but all the weapons are empty so he resigns himself to resting on a convenient sofa until police arrive on the scene of mayhem and carnage.

Close-up of the Brother Production 1/6 scale Robert De Niro as Travis Bickle head sculpt, one of three released with this SPECIAL EDITION piece. The other two headsculpts have been covered in my earlier post.

Robert De Niro's Mohawk haircut was not real, due to the fact that De Niro still had to shoot scenes for the film with hair after the Mohawk portions. Makeup artist Dick Smith created a bald cap that was glued to De Niro's head and the mohawk was made of thick horse hair.

The scene where Travis Bickle is talking to himself in the mirror was completely ad-libbed by Robert De Niro. The screenplay details just said, "Travis looks in the mirror."

Close-ups of Brother Production Cab Driver "Travis" with Smith & Wesson Model 29 .44 Magnum

and Smith & Wesson Model 36 revolver. He also comes with the shoulder holsters for these handguns.

The white shirt Travis wears and the shoulder holsters he comes with were covered in an earlier post

A brief epilogue shows Bickle recuperating from the incident. He has received a handwritten letter from Iris' parents who thank him for saving their daughter, and the media hails him as a hero for saving her as well.


Kin said...

Hi Alex,

This very rare Robert De Niro figure you also have.
Although i haven't watch the movie yet but i did came across from the magazine & i would say is very similiar.



alex teo said...

hey Kin, try to watch the movie if you enjoy Robert De Niro - he's GOOD :>