In anticipation for my trip to New York City I will be counting down with some of my NYC movies (and even some that I don't like just for a change of pace). Hope you all enjoy.
Oh you knew it had to be on here.
Contrary to what I wrote earlier in the week about Martin Scorsese's Taxi Driver, I love New York New York despite the fact that I can tell things needed to be thrown out. Such is the affection I have for these sort of messy pet projects, I suppose. Watching New York, New York is a very surreal experience. With the knowledge that Robert DeNiro and Liza Minnelli were improvising a lot (hence the long single takes) and that Scorsese deliberately asked Liza to channel her mother, Judy Garland, in the singing scenes just adds to the level of bizarreness on offer here. But, as I say, that's all part of its deranged charm.
The other big part of it's charm belongs to Liza Minnelli who gives a performance I'd call "mindblowing". She does blow everything else off screen when she's around and she takes the focus off of weird Robert DeNiro. Her climactic performance of "Theme from New York, New York" (written by Kander and Ebb) is euphoric. It's a shame the Frank Sinatra version is the one so many people think of when they think of this great song (why it was Oscar snubbed we'll never know). She hits it outta the park!