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ELIZABETH TAYLOR IN AN ARTHOUSE RIDE FOR 'THE DRIVER'S SEAT'

Title: THE DRIVER'S SEAT aka IDENTIKIT Year: 1974 Rating: ***1/2

Since this Italian-shot art film... looking science-fiction futuristic with hypnotic phosphorescent interiors from an ominous airport to a vibrant shopping mall... stars screen legend Elizabeth Taylor, it's considered an utter travesty...

Yet THE DRIVER'S SEAT is actually a unique, sparse yet hallucinatory neo noir in which the central plot's completely spoiled from the online description all the way back to the back of the VHS tapes: A woman travels through Italy to find someone to kill her... But are we really supposed to know that?

Elizabeth Taylor in THE DRIVER'S SEAT with Ian Bannen

Taylor's Lisa... a temperamental middle-aged woman (colorfully dressed like for a circus, one neighbor scoffs)... to an unaware audience, seems to be looking for (while randomly auditioning for) the perfect LOVER as opposed to KILLER...

Each visited locale is investigated by detectives in a non-linear timeline, running concurrently with the immediate past where she's dodged by a quiet handsome Italian, attacked by a brash aggressive one, briefly joined by an old British woman (Mona Washburn) and bothered by a rambling vegetarian (Ian Bannen) while her destiny carries both plot and character, hence the title: A damn shame that the DRIVER is revealed before the ride even begins. 

Ominous airport scene in THE DRIVER'S SEAT
Elizabeth Taylor in THE DRIVER'S SEAT
Elizabeth Taylor in THE DRIVER'S SEAT with Ian Bannen
Elizabeth Taylor in THE DRIVER'S SEAT
Elizabeth Taylor in THE DRIVER'S SEAT
Elizabeth Taylor in THE DRIVER'S SEAT with Mona Washburn
Dino Mele in THE DRIVER'S SEAT was also in Taylor's ASH WEDNESDAY

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