A cab driver finds himself the hostage of an engaging contract killer as he makes his rounds from hit to hit during one night in LA. He must find a way to save both himself and one last victim.
[stuttering] Max: He, he, he fell on the cab. He fell, he fell from up there on the motherfucking cab. Shit. I think he’s dead.
Vincent: Good guess.
Max: You killed him?
Vincent: No, I shot him. Bullets and the fall killed him.
Max: I can’t drive you around while you’re killing folks. It ain’t my job!
Vincent: Tonight it is.
Vincent: Okay, look, here’s the deal. Man, you were gonna drive me around tonight, never be the wiser,
but El Gordo got in front of a window, did his high dive, we’re into Plan B. Still breathing? Now we gotta make the
best of it, improvise, adapt to the environment, Darwin, shit happens, I Ching, whatever man, we gotta roll with it.
Max: I Ching? What are you talking about, man? You threw a man out of a window.
Vincent: I didn’t throw him. He *fell*
Max: Well what did he do to you?
Max: What did he do to *you*?
Vincent: Nothing. I only met him tonight.
Max: You just met him once and you killed him like that?
Vincent: What? I should only kill people after I get to know them?
Max: First time in L.A.?
Vincent: No. Tell you the truth, whenever I’m here I can’t wait to leave. It’s too sprawled out, disconnected. You know?
That’s me. You like it?
Max: It’s my home.
Vincent: 17 million people. This is got to be the fifth biggest economy in the world and nobody knows each other. I read
about this guy who gets on the MTA here, dies.
Vincent: Six hours he’s riding the subway before anybody notices his corpse doing laps around L.A., people on and off
sitting next to him. Nobody notices.
Vincent: Guy gets on the subway and dies. Think anybody’ll notice?
Vincent: Lady Macbeth. Leave the seats. The light’s green. We’re sitting here.
Max: [a car horn honks behind Max. The car whips around them to get through the intersection] Asshole!
Vincent: You no longer have the cleanest cab in La-La Land. You gotta live with that. Focus on the job. Drive.
Vincent: [after the nightclub shootout] Only thing that didn’t show up is the Polish cavalry.
Max: I’m not taking you to see my mother.
Vincent: Since when was any of this negotiable?
Vincent: You’re alive. I saved you. Do I get any thanks? No. All you can do is clam up. You wanna talk? Tell me to fuck off?
Max: Fuck off.
Max: Why didn’t you just kill me and get another cab driver?
Vincent: Cause you’re good. We’re in this together. Fates intertwined. Cosmic Coincidence.
Max: You’re full of shit.
Vincent: I’m full of shit? You’re a monument of it. You even bullshitted yourself, all I am is taking out the garbage, killing bad people.
Max: Yeah, well that’s what you said.
Vincent: You believed me?
Max: Then what’d they do?
Vincent: How do I know, you know? They all got that ‘witness for the prosecution’ look to me. Probably some major federal
indictment of somebody who majorly does not want to get indicted.
Vincent: There’s no good reason, there’s no bad reason to live or to die.
Max: Then what are you?
Vincent: I’m indifferent.
Vincent: [Visiting Ida] Flowers?
Max: It’s the money. Won’t mean a thing to her.
Vincent: [Staring him down] She carried you in her womb for nine months. If you can buy flowers, buy flowers.
Vincent: [to Max when pulled over by police] Don’t get me cornered. You don’t have the trunk space.
Daniel: Just when I thought you were a cool guy.[warning Max when two policemen have them pulled over] Vincent: If you open that trunk, they go inside. [preparing to impersonate Vincent and meet with his bosses] Max: How long have you been doing this? In case anyone asks?
Vincent: I am a cool guy, with a job I contracted to do.
Vincent: Private sector? Six years.
Max: Uh… you get health benefits? Pension…?
Vincent: No, and no paid vacation. Quit stalling, and get in there. [after Vincent and Max load a corpse into the cab’s trunk] Vincent: Lets go.
Max: Hey, why don’t you just take the cab?
Vincent: Take the cab?
Max: Yeah, you take it. I’ll – I’ll chill. I’ll – I’ll just chill. They don’t even know who’s driving these things half the time anyway.
They never check or anything. Okay… so… just – just take it. You, me…
Vincent: You promise not to tell anybody right?
Max: Yeah… yeah… yeah… promise.
Vincent: Get in the fucking car.
Vincent: Yo, homie. Is that my briefcase?[Max is on the radio dispatch with his boss, Lenny] Max: Yeah, Lenny, what’s up? It’s me.
Lenny: Just got off the phone with the cops. Desk sergeant called to check if you brought the cab in?
Max: Yeah, so?
Lenny: So, aside from I hate talking to cops, they tell me you crashed the goddamn cab?
Max: No, no, I got crashed into. I didn’t…
Lenny: Do I care what, where, why? You’re paying.
[Vincent is trying to think of what Max should say next] Vincent: [to Max] It was an accident. You’re not liable.
Max: It was an accident. I’m not liable.
Lenny: Bullshit. I’m making you liable. It’s coming out of your goddamn pocket.
Vincent: [to Max] You tell him to stick this cab up his fat ass.
Max: I can’t do that, that’s my boss.
Max: I need my job.
Vincent: No, you don’t. [after Max crashes the cab] Vincent: Well, that was brilliant…
Vincent: Max, six billion people on the planet, you’re getting bent out of shape cause of one fat guy.
Max: Well, who was he?
Vincent: What do you care? Have you ever heard of Rwanda?
Max: Yes, I know Rwanda.
Vincent: Well, tens of thousands killed before sundown. Nobody’s killed people that fast since Nagasaki and Hiroshima.
Did you bat an eye, Max?
Vincent: Did you join Amnesty International, Oxfam, Save the Whales, Greenpeace, or something? No. I off one fat
Angelino and you throw a hissy fit.
Max: Man, I don’t know any Rwandans.
Vincent: You don’t know the guy in the trunk, either.
Vincent: Max, I do this for a living!
Vincent: You attract attention, you’re going to get people killed who didn’t need to be.
Vincent: Most people – same job, same gig, doing the same thing 10 years from now. Us, we don’t know what we are
doing 10 minutes from now.
Vincent: What’s your name?[over the dispatch system] Lenny: Still there? I’m talking to you. Max. Max!
Vincent: Max. I’m Vincent.
Vincent: He’s not paying you a damn thing.
Lenny: Who the hell is this?
Vincent: Albert Ricardo, Assistant U.S. Attorney, a passenger in this cab, and I’m reporting you to the D.M.V.
Lenny: Let’s not, oh, let’s not get excited.
Vincent: Not get excited? How am I supposed to not get excited? Listen, you try to extort a working man.
You know goddamn well your collision policy and general liability umbrella will cover the damages.
And what are you trying to pull, you sarcastic prick?
Lenny: Look, I was just trying to…
Vincent: Tell it to him.
[to Max] Vincent: Tell him he’s an asshole. Go ahead.
Max: [to Lenny] You’re an asshole.
Vincent: Tell him he pulls this shit again, you’re gonna stick this yellow cab up his fat ass.
Max: [to Lenny] And, and next time you pull any shit, I’m gonna… I’m gonna have to stick this yellow cab up… up your fat ass.
Vincent: They project onto you their flaws, what they don’t like about themselves. I had a father like that.
Max: Mothers are worse.
Vincent: Wouldn’t know. My mother died before I remember her.
Max: What about your father?
Vincent: Hated everything I did. Got drunk, beat me up. In and out of foster homes, that kinda thing.
Max: And then?
Vincent: I killed him. I was twelve.
[pauses, then laughs] Vincent: I’m kidding. He died of liver disease.
Max: Well, I’m sorry.
Vincent: No, you’re not.
Vincent: [pulls a gun on Max] Red light, Max.
Vincent: Get with it. Millions of galaxies of hundreds of millions of stars, in a speck on one in a blink.
That’s us, lost in space. The cop, you, me… Who notices?
Vincent: Take comfort in knowing you never had a choice.
Max: [In the dark] Let her go.
Vincent: Max? Why? What are you gonna do about it?
[He gets shot]
Crew or equipment visible: When Max sees the security guard at the office building he runs around to another door.
The cameraman is visible in the glare of the building running next to Max.
Continuity: When the taxi cab crashes, Vincent (or a dummy that looks like Vincent) is clearly visible upside-down in his seat. But it the next shot, he’s laying on his back.
Continuity: When Max crashes the cab, he passes the water barrels. In the next shot, he crashes into them.
Continuity: The rubber bands that hold Max’s picture postcard to the visor are sometimes smooth and other times twisted, even though he hasn’t removed the postcard.
Factual errors: When the two LAPD officers pull Max over, the black officer is sporting a goatee. Per LAPD regulations, no uniformed officers may have a goatee.
Continuity: The smashed windshield is inconsistently broken throughout the film.
Continuity: The “Metro” sign isn’t on the wall when Max and Annie run to it, but it appears when Vincent chases after the two.
Continuity: When Max begins to drive fast in his cab before he crashes, all the roads he is on are either empty or nearly empty, yet when we see the road moments after the crash, it is very busy.
Continuity: When Annie and Max are running from Vincent, they come to the subway platform. The train they board is marked for the “M” platform, although the platform they’re on is marked “L”.
Continuity: After Max and Vincent leave the Fever Nightclub, Max crashes his taxi into two parked cars. In the first shot of the front of the car after the crash the taxi appears to have no damage at all, the following shot the left front light is broken and there’s damage to the side of the taxi. In the next shot, the damage is gone again.
Crew or equipment visible: When the taxi crashes, hidden equipment is visible next to the parked cars, but is removed after the crash.
Continuity: After Vincent was shot for the first time by Max, his jacket was torn at the shoulder. In the next scene there is no tear.
Continuity: In some shoots during the subway/train scenes Vincent is not wearing a belt.
Revealing mistakes: When Max and Vincent load the first corpse in the trunk, the “corpse” is holding Max by the wrists as well.
Errors in geography: The lawyer Vincent shoots is supposed to live on Fountain Avenue in West Hollywood. The view from his condo is downtown Los Angeles – about 12 miles from the given address
Continuity: Right before Max crashes the car, they pass by Staples Center in Los Angeles and it is green and red (they change it to green and red during the holiday season). Then when you see Staples Center throughout the rest of the movie (which occurs on the same night) it is back to the original colors of blue and red.
Audio/visual unsynchronized: In the jazz club, Daniel removes the trumpet from his mouth before the final note he was “playing” has finished on the soundtrack.
Continuity: When Vincent is offering Max the money to hire the cab for the night he puts his hand up on the back seat but in the next shot Vincent’s hand is not there.
Continuity: At the catwalk scene, right after Max tosses out the briefcase, Vincent is holding his gun with his right hand, and passes it to his left hand. At the next shot, he’s holding the gun with his right hand again.
Continuity: When the characters enter the hospital elevator on the main floor, it has a telescopic door, but at the 3rd and 5th floors the door opens centrally.
Continuity: When Annie knocks on the passenger-side window to give Max her card, he rolls the window all the way down, but when she hands him the card, it is only half-way down.
Revealing mistakes: In the hospital morgue scene, the eyes of the second corpse (rich guy killed in penthouse apartment/Vincent’s second hit) move in a close-up of his head. Moreover, the ‘corpse’ is breathing.
Continuity: After the shootout in the subway, Max has his glasses on. Then when Max is shown sitting across from Vincent they’re off and he puts them on. Then when they show him get off the subway with Annie, he doesn’t have glasses on again.
Audio/visual unsynchronized: After the final taxi crash when the cop is trying to put the handcuffs on Max you hear the locking sound effect of the first handcuff going on, but the cop never gets the first handcuff on.
Errors in geography: After Max picks up Annie at LAX she suggests taking La Brea Ave to 6th St
and heading downtown. Max advises against this, citing that traffic gets heavy on La Brea above (north of) Santa Monica Blvd. This is irrelevant because 6th street is about two miles south of Santa Monica Blvd and if they were to have taken her route they would have turned onto sixth long before Santa Monica Blvd would have come up.
Continuity: When Max gets held up in the alley, he is approached by a whole gang of thugs. When Vincent gets his bag back from the thugs, there are only two.
Continuity: When they enter the elevator in the hospital, and Vincent asks what floor, in one shot he is pressing the buttons with his right hand, but when they show the buttons pressed, it is his left hand (as the thumb is pointing down)
Miscellaneous: While Annie is riding in Max’s cab, Max turns on the radio and we hear the song “Hands of Time” by Groove Armada. Annie comments: “Oh, you like the classics?” While sounding somewhat like classic ’70s Motown, this song did not come out until about a year before the movie was made, which, strictly speaking, hardly makes it a classic.
Crew or equipment visible: While driving on a near-deserted road (going to Fever) what appears to be the flashing red and blue lights of a police car (presumably escorting the production vehicles) can be seen reflected in the cab’s window.
Continuity: When Annie gets into the cab at the start, she gets in and sits on the left hand side, yet throughout the rest of the cab ride, she is on the right hand side (directions as per facing destination).