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JAMES CAGNEY'S NO DIRTY RAT IN THE BRISK MELODRAMA 'TAXI'

Title: TAXI Year: 1931 Rating: ***

Begins as a predictable, cliché melodrama dealing with the haves… a monopolizing consortium cab company… against the have-nots: independent cabbies trying to make it on their own without getting whacked in the process...

But soon the message peels into involving crime fare with James Cagney as Matt Nolan, who... along with future FRISCO KID sidekick George E. Stone... never actually says "You dirty rat" but barks something similar to best girl Loretta Young...

The movie gets better as the more stress enters Nolan's life: various thugs from the consortium move in, and every dame... from the one good to the several bad/untrusting... annoy the hell out of him: providing the cocky firebrand the usual classic tantrums, and so, Matt Nolan is like most of Cagney’s early-era tough guys, only with a real cause he's extra ticked-off and super edgy. Fighting the good fight you'll back him all the way, so much so the other characters seem nonexistent whether he's on, or off, the screen.

James Cagney in TAXI
James Cagney in TAXI
Loretta Young in TAXI
James Cagney in TAXI
James Cagney in TAXI with George E. Stone

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