- Acting of Lead Performers
- Acting of Supporting Cast
- Music Score
- Title Sequence
- Historical Importance
- Would You Recommend?
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My favorite James Cagney film!
A fun little pre-Code quickie that gives Cagney, as young New York taxi driver Matt Nolan, the chance to play a more sympathetic character than his usual hard-boiled gangster, show off his range as an actor, not to mention his fighting and dancing skills, all while starring opposite the beautiful Loretta Young. What's not to like?I loved seeing Cagney play a regular guy for a change, albeit one with the signature charm, brashness, energy, and spit-fire temper that he brought to every role. His chemistry with Young is excellent, and together their sincere performances electrify this 69-minute production-line quickie into something amazingly compelling. The plot, which hinges on Nolan's difficulty in controlling his temper, is somewhar thin, but you won't notice, due to the brisk 69-minute runtime and the steady tension Cagney's performance contributes. When one of his outbursts results in the murder of his brother, Matt sets out on the path for revenge, which sees Cagney uttering one of the most misquoted lines in movie history: "Come out and take it, you dirty, yellow-bellied rat, or I'll give it to you through the door!""Taxi!" is a hard film to describe, as it has its foot in so many genres, including romantic comedy, drama, crime, and action. It doesn't aspire to be anything more than entertainment, and for Cagney fans, the chance to see him speaking Yiddish and dancing the Peabody with Loretta Young is enough to make it worth watching. Yet there's something about it that makes it an enjoyable ride I have enjoyed taking over and over again. Thank you, TCM, for introducing me to this gem of a film!
When have you ever seen a Waiter carrying a flyswatter in a seafood restaurant before? That was hysterical! And Leila Bennett reminds me of Imogine Coca, or vice versa. Great movie all around!
Cagney and Young Carry the Pic
- Cori Zee
Jimmy Cagney at his pugnacious best, and this time the plot revolves around his inability to keep from socking blokes left and right for any least offense! Loretta Young shows remarkable acting ability at the tender age of 18. Once you get over how young these two Hollywood greats look in this movie, you just sit back and enjoy the charisma they bring to their characters, and how they so convincingly drive the plot line to its conclusion.As in all movies from the studio era, they are well supported by the secondary cast which are able to bring humor and characterization to their roles. And here Cagney delivers his famous "you dirty rat line"' and you'll be surprised who he says it to!
18 year-old Loretta tames Cagney in one of her more powerful performances. Wonderful script and cast, including the inimitable Leila Bennett. Must see to believe.
Go for a Ride with Cagney
So many good things about this picture: a young, pretty Loretta Young as Cagney's love interest; he speaks Yiddish for the first time on film (and not the last); his first dancing on film (watch that footwork!); his portrayal of an angry young man is realistic; his emotional breakddown at his brother's death is great. One thing: Young's girlfriend talks too much and has a jarring voice that wears on you. But then, she wears on everyone in the film as well, so maybe it was intended to make us "feel their pain."
JAMES CAGNEY / LORETTA YOUNG
STARRING A YOUNG JAMES CAGNEY AND LORETTA YOUNG, TAXI! IS A VERY SOLID MOVIE ABOUT A CAB DRIVER TRYING TO MAKE A LIVING IN A CROOKED BUSINESS. JAMES CAGNEY IS GREAT IN THIS FILM, AS IS THE VERY BEAUTIFUL LORETTA YOUNG. IF YOU LIKE THOSE FAST-PACED EARLY 1930's WARNER BROS. MOVIES, THEN YOU SHOULD CHECK THIS ONE OUT!