Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Taxi (1932)

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“I'd like to bury the hatchet - right in their thick skulls.”

            Taxi begins with newspaper headlines blaring how there is a war of taxi cab companies. Consolidated has been bullying other companies out of business by hitting their cars and threatening other drivers away from certain areas. Two Consolidated drivers try to keep Gramercy  cab driver Matt Nolan (James Cagney)from taking a customer where he needs to go. The two drivers did not figure in that Matt is a hot head and would fight back.
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            The spook Buck Gerard from Consolidated is sent to scare off Pop Reilly. Pop has been working the corner of the street near the diner where his daughter Sue (Loretta Young) works for six years. Buck tells the old man he better leave the corner by the next day or risk his neck. Pop is not backing down. Buck goes to a guy around the corner and tells him to ram the cab making it look like it an accident. Pop is furious when his cab is hit he knows the guy hit it on purpose. Out of frustration Pop shoots the driver. He is sent to jail but only for ten years since he is older and the judge understood his situation.
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            Matt knows Sue. He goes to the diner and tells her he is taking her out that night. He takes her to a meeting at the cab company. He thinks she will be on the company’s side and call them to fight for her father who died that morning. Sue does not want them all to fight like Consolidated she wants them to stand their ground without violence. Matt is upset with her and tells her he wants to hit her. Sue gets her hit in and runs off for the subway.
            Despite their anger towards each other Sue and Matt begin dating. At a dance competition Matt gets mad at the guy who beat them and he starts a fight. Everywhere they go Matt has to start trouble. She tells him since he cannot get his act together they are through. Sometime later Matt comes by her apartment and sweet talks her into forgiving him. As his hugs her he puts an engagement ring on her finger. Sue gives him one more chance.
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            The night they got married they go out to a nightclub with their friends and Matt’s brother Danny. Buck is also at the club with his girlfriend Marie. Buck is drunk and when he sees Matt he immediately starts bothering him. Marie sends a note over to Sue to meet her I the bathroom. Marie tells Sue she does not want anything to happen to Buck. She loves him even though she knows he is not a good guy. Sue does not want Matt to get into any trouble either so she agrees to do what she can to help. Buck says the wrong thing to Matt and the two men start to fight. Buck pulls out a knife to kill Matt but Danny comes between them. Unfortunately Danny dies.
            Now Matt is hell bent on getting even with Buck. Sue and Marie do their best to keep their men away from each other. Before Matt can get to Buck, Sue gets to their apartment to warn them. Buck hides and Matt looks around for him. Marie blocks the door to the closet where Buck is hiding. The police come to the apartment looking for associates of Buck’s. They move Marie away from the door and Matt shoots it. Buck had moved away but he died after falling from the window.
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            Sue is ready to leave Matt. All their furniture has been moved out. Matt comes by again to say he is sorry.

            I did not know what Taxi was about. Going off the poster I was thinking it was a somewhat funny film. It was a straight up drama. It was not bad but because I was not expecting a drama I got a bit bored with it. Plus, the story was boring. It was a mix between a romance and a revenge story and both of those stories usually bore me to absolute tears. James Cagney really never does anything for me he always seemed to play the same tough guy characters. Loretta Young was great. Taxi was alright. If you like Pre-Codes or Loretta Young or James Cagney then it is worth watching. 
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