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9 Movies Like Taxi Driver To Watch If You Enjoy Intense Psychological Dramas

movies like taxi driver

For many great reasons Scorsese’s Taxi Driver still stands tall in the records of cinematic history. While this brilliant film is like no other, we hope our list of some fantastic movies like Taxi Driver can help you find good recommendations. Taxi Driver was released in 1976 and became one of the greatest American psychological drama films ever made. The film resulted from Scorsese’s sharp direction, Robert De Niro’s chilling performance, and brilliantly written script. The praise-worthy stunning visuals are unforgettable. The film ostensibly mounted a harsh critique of America when adapting the film noir tradition for an even more cynical post-Vietnam era. Audiences worldwide have readily identified with the judgments of moral, social, and urban decay. Taxi Driver gets to the heart of isolation, hypocrisy, obsession, purity, corruption, desire, and vengeance.

List of Movies Like Taxi Driver

  1. Goodfellas 
  2. Drive
  3. American Psycho
  4. Blade Runner 2049
  5. Se7en
  6. Panic Room
  7. The Departed
  8. Joker
  9. Night on Earth

1. Goodfellas (1990)

Martin Scorsese is undoubtedly a talented director, and one of his most notable films is the 1990 Goodfellas. Considered to be a crime genre classic, on surface value, Goodfellas does not have a lot in common with Taxi Driver, except for Robert De Niro. Instead, Scorsese’s mastery of deeper themes of vice, virtue, judgement, and forgiveness brings the two together. The film follows a couple of American citizens who engage in criminal activity to make money. 

Based on Nichola Pileggi’s book Wise guy, this is a true story of an Irish-Italian Brooklyn mobster – Henry Hill spanning over 30 years. Henry always wanted to be a mobster and was taken under the wings by a local gangster ‘Paulie’ at 11. Initially running small errands, he gradually moves up the ladder to become one of the closest associates to Paulie. If you are looking for movies like Taxi Driver, then Goodfellas should be your first pick. 

2. Drive (2011)

Drive is an action-drama film that follows an unnamed Hollywood stunt driver who moonlights as a gateway driver. The protagonist quickly grows fond of a woman called Irene, who is married to a criminal. The driver promises to protect Irene and her son from her husband and some dangerous gangsters. 

The films’ protagonists (Taxi Driver and Drive) have a lot in common. Both have sociopathic tendencies (I’d say Driver is saner than Bickle) and relish in violence yet see themselves as the ‘Heroes’ or ‘Force of Good’. The two films examine drivers on the brink of an outburst. Their psychological condition prevents them from being with the women they like. I highly recommend Drive if you’re a fan of films like Taxi Driver

3. American Psycho (2000)

American Psycho is a horror film blended with black humour to satirise the consumerism and yippie culture of the 1980s. Patrick Bateman is a wealthy and materialistic investment banking executive who leads a double life as a serial killer. As the story progresses, he delves deep into his psychopathic and overindulgent fantasies.

Both the characters of Bateman and Bickle overlap in many ways. They put their normalcy in front of the world, secretly being up to violent crimes. But in the end, Bickle dreams of redemption and celebration of what he did, while Bateman takes another route. American Psycho is by far the one of most chilling movies similar to Taxi Driver.

Also Read: Movies like Inglourious Basterds

4. Blade Runner 2049 (2017)

Blade Runner 2049 is a sci-fi sequel film to the 1982 Blade Runner. Henry Ford reprises his role in the original movie alongside Ryan Gosling. In this near-future world, synthetic humans known as ”replicas” are bio-engineered by the powerful Tyrell Corporation to work on space colonies. The sequel was not very successful at the time of release but has become a modern cult classic ever since. 

The movie has a similar late-night, relaxing feel to Taxi Driver. Officer K (Ryan Gosling), the new blade runner for the LAPD, unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to tumble what’s left of society into chaos. The dark, immoral, nihilistic atmosphere and absolutely stunning visuals will remind you of movies like Taxi Driver, hence do give this movie a try.

5. Se7en (1995)

Se7en or just Seven is a psychological crime thriller and tells a story of a retiring Detective William Somerset, who partners with a short-tempered idealistic Detective David Mills. They hunt a serial killer who uses Dante’s seven deadly sins as his motives.  

Like Taxi Driver, Seven is set in the underbelly of New York and focuses on the idea that the story’s true villain is society. Simple-minded people are highly affected by murderous crimes. In contrast, the criminals believe they are the ‘good ones,’ and their actions are for the better of society. Se7en is a great choice for films like Taxi Driver

6. Panic Room (2002)

Panic Room is a thriller film directed by David Fincher, and it features a grown-up Jodie Foster in the lead role of Meg. A recently divorced mother, Meg, and her daughter Sarah find themselves hiding in a panic room in their new home when 3 dangerous burglars break in. Little do they know; the panic room is what the burglars are after.

The film is as straightforward in suspenseful storytelling as Taxi Driver. Though Panic Room got high praise from critics for Jodie’s exciting and exceptional performance, it has become one of Fincher’s most underrated films. Panic Room is an excellent Joie Foster film to watch if you wish to see more movies similar to Taxi Driver.

7. The Departed (2006)

Martin Scorsese’s The Departed is a 2006 American epic crime thriller film. A remake of the 2002 Hong Kong film Infernal Affairs and is loosely based on the real-life Boston Winter Hill Gang. The Departed is an action-packed thriller set in Boston, where a long-simmering hostility between the police department and an Irish American gang is on the verge of explosion.

The film follows two characters, a gangster (Matt Damon), chosen to infiltrate the police force, and a young cop (Leonardo DiCaprio) who goes undercover with the gang. In my opinion, this is one of Scorsese’s best films. The soundtrack is incredible, with jazzy beats and classic numbers, and the story is no short of being phenomenal. The Departed is a perfect film to watch if you’re looking for movies like Taxi Driver. Go Check it out.

Also Read: Movies like Prisoners

8. Joker (2019)

As you might have guessed, Joker is a film that centres on the most famous villain of the Batman stories. This film serves as a standalone origin story of the character’s alienating and unjust experiences. The director Todd Phillips has spoken about Taxi Driver heavily influencing this film. Both films follow the main characters who suffer from mental illness, and the world around them refuses to accept them (they represent the ignored society). 

As the characters reach their breaking point, they resort to killing people. A significant reason for this thematic similarity is that Scorsese was involved in the pre-production of Joker, while Robert De Niro appears as a talk show host in the film. Suppose you want to see films with a familiar sense of relationships, violence, and anti-heroic arcs. In that case, Joker should be the right pick for movies like Taxi Driver.

9. Night on Earth (1991)

Night on Earth is a 1991 art comedy-drama film written and directed by Jim Jarmusch. The artistic 1991 film Night On Earth is an interesting example of how a taxi driver can sit at the centre of an interesting storyline. Its artistic approach uses five separate stories that each focus on the bond between the taxi driver and their passengers.

Jarmusch is a poet of the night. Much of Night on Earth creates the same kind of lonely, elegiac, romantic mood as Mystery Train, his film about wanderers in nighttime Memphis. Tom Waits’ music helps to establish this mood of cities that have been emptied of the waking. It’s as if the minds of these night people are affected by all of the dreams and nightmares that surround them. Similar to Taxi Driver, if you’re interested in watching more movies like Taxi DriverNight on Earth should be a film for you.

Honourable Mentions 

Here are a few brilliant movies like Taxi Driver that didn’t make the list, but you can check them out nonetheless: 

  1. Collateral
  2. The Batman
  3. Scarface 

When Lost aired over a decade ago, its successful narrative created a pop culture impact and changed the landscape of television. If you are a fan and want to watch shows like Lost then you can have a look at this list we made just for you.

Lost

The hugely successful television series Lost aired in 2004. The premise, as we know, deals with a group of people surviving a commercial passenger plane crash on a remote island. The show masterfully explores supernatural and sci-fi elements on this mysterious south Pacific island. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KTu8iDynwNc

The use of cliffhangers at the end of each episode of Lost kept the viewers on the edge of their seats, desperately craving for the next episode to come. Even though it's a large ensemble cast, most of the characters receive a justifiable personal arch. Lost was inspired by the movie Castaway and became one of the most expensive pilots to be shot at the time! Lost continues to be appreciated for its originality in storytelling and dynamic character arcs. 

List of TV Shows Like Lost

  1. The Leftovers
  2. Manifest
  3. Lost Room
  4. Twin Peaks
  5. The Prisoners
  6. Battlestar Galactica
  7. The New People
  8. Flight 29 Down
  9. Fringe
  10. Alcatraz
  11. Under the Dome
  12. Dark

1. The Leftovers (2014)

IMDB ratings: 8.3/10

Cast: Carrie Coon, Justin Theroux, Amy Brenneman and Margaret Qualley

Creator: Damon Lindelof and Tom Perrotta

The director of Lost, Damon Lindel also created a supernatural drama series called The Leftovers. The show begins 3 years after an unexplainable global event called ‘Sudden Departure’  where almost 2 per cent of the population, nearly 140 million people, disappear. The Leftovers isn't about WHY people are gone, it's about how the ones who remain dealt with their loss, people often try to comfort themselves with dreams, angels, gods, or even death.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FLT3YUALJno&t=8s

The Leftovers will leave you with so many questions but beyond words, you have to feel it and savour its unanswered questions to find peace. The Leftovers is an incredible television series that starts incredibly well but loses its way by the series's end. I have to say though, Carrie Coon has brilliant moments in the end. The Leftovers is so weird, fragmented and nonsensical at times that it reminds me of Lost. If you are looking for shows like Lost, I recommend that you give The Leftovers a try.

2. Manifest  (2018) 

IMDB ratings: 7.1/10

Cast: Melissa Roxburgh, Josh Dallas and J.R. Ramirez 

Creator: Jeff Rake


The Manifest is a supernatural drama show about a bunch of people who discover that they lost 5 years of their lives when they landed in New York after their aeroplane faced severe turbulence. All the people on the plane were presumed to be dead. Now, these people have to find a way to adjust themselves to a new life around their loved ones. Mild spoiler! They learn their loved ones and the rest of society is not as they left it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1hNAIzkQWY

I found that the show’s premise was very intriguing and the actors give a very convincing performance. The narrative details of the show, however, in my opinion, are a bit sloppy and inconsistent. The writers surely have room for improvement but their concept is incredibly thrilling. Every episode of Manifest keeps you on your toes. Manifest has completed 3 seasons up until now and continues to be on air. Manifest is a pretty good choice if you want to watch TV shows like Lost.

3. Lost Room (2006)

IMDB ratings: 8.1/10

Cast: Peter Krause, Julianna Margulies and Peter Jacobson

Creator: Christopher Leone, Laura Harkcom

This lesser-known show The Lost Room is an American Sci-fi television miniseries which only had 3 episodes of 90 mins each and no follow-up seasons. The show was based on a very unique idea where the room in question (known as the ‘Lost Room’) and the objects in the said room had supernatural powers. This strange room is set in a 1960s motel along the iconic U.S. Route 66. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DfWrECLnFYU

One day the protagonist (Peter Krause) Joe Miller’s daughter disappears inside the room. Joe, with the help of objects present in the room, tries to find his daughter Anna (Elle Fanning). The story of Lost Room was intensely engaging. I found the direction and the actor’s performances to be absolutely brilliant. It baffles me that the creators did not return to make another short season within the same concept. If you have been searching for TV series like Lost then I can assure you that Lost Room will be worth a watch.

4. Twins Peaks (1990) 

IMDB ratings: 8.8/10

Cast: Kyle MacLachlan, Mädchen Amick, Sherilyn Fenn and David Lynch

Creator: David Lynch

David Lynch, the well-known director of weird and captivating films such as Eraserhead and Blue Velvet created an iconic show called Twin Peaks. It is a hauntingly eccentric show about the investigation of the mysterious murder of a small-town homecoming queen named Laura Palmer. Believe me, as odd as the show may seem at first, you will grow to love it, after all, it is considered to be one of the best mystery shows ever created. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zwn9ou_nf-I

With the mysteries, the supernatural elements and the list of bizarre characters, Twin Peaks has it all. In my opinion, the cinematography of the show was truly ahead of its time. Kyle’s Dale Cooper was especially entertaining. Twin Peaks’ experimental formula of the satirical soap opera is extremely unsettling yet rewarding to watch, I must warn you, it’s not for the faint-hearted!  If you are in search of TV shows like Lost then Twin Peaks won’t disappoint you.

The Prisoners (1967)

IMDB ratings: 8.5/10

Cast: Patrick McGoohan, Angelo Muscat and Geroge Markstien

Creator: Patrick McGoohan


The Prisoner centres around an unnamed British agent (Patrick McGoohan) who tries to flee his country after abruptly quitting his high-ranking government job. He is abducted and held captive in a strange ‘sea-side’ village that is isolated from the rest of the world. This village is a highly secure and monitored place filled with weird technology. There are only 17 episodes to this late 60s show but it manages to bring up such surreal surprises, it's sure to leave a great impact on the viewer.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4JrNr85fPms

The Prisoner’s unique concept influenced many popular shows including Lost. The creators of Lost even cited the show. I was very impressed by how ahead of its time The Prisoners proves to be. If you want to watch more shows similar to Lost the Prisoners should definitely be on your list.

6. Battlestar Galactica (2004)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Katee Sackhoff, Edward James Olmos and Tricia Helfer 

Creator: Glen A. Larson

The 2004 Battlestar Galactica is a reboot of the original 1978 miniseries of the same name. Do not be mistaken by the title, the show is not related to Star Trek.  Battlestar Galactica is set in the 7th millennium AD and follows Cylons, the robot enemy of humanity that resurfaces to destroy the 12 colonies of Mankind. Only a few survive and are able to escape on ships led by a powerful warship called Battlestar Galactica. Mankind struggles to fight the Cylons and work their own political agendas and disputes while finding their long-lost 13th colony Earth.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnYsf2Yv8i8

The show is a dark, intense and gritty socio-political commentary with EPIC cinematic value. The script is especially clever and as a huge fan of sci-fi shows, this show ticks the boxes in all the right categories. When the show was released, it blew the viewers and critics away. As far as an obsessive and gripping story goes, Battlestar Galactica is one of the most similar to shows like Lost. 

7. The New People (1969)

IMDB ratings: 7.3/10

Cast: David Moses, Zooey hall and Tiffany Boiling

Creator: Larry Gordon Aaron Spelling

The New People is an American Tv series that aired only for 1 season and is focused on a couple of college students who survive a plane crash. The incident takes place while they were returning from a trip to Southeast Asia, their plane crashes on an island in the south of the Pacific ocean. 

By now this show must already be sounding a lot like Lost to you, and it surely is. The remaining group of people discover an unusual truth about the island: there’s an above-ground unused nuclear test site filled with supplies for the survivors. If you want to see more plane survival stories like Lost then The New People should definitely be on your list.

8. Flight 29 Down (2005)

IMDB ratings: 7.2/10

Cast: Allen Alvarado, Halle Hirsh and Corbin Bleu

Creator:  Stan Rowgow D. J. MacHale

The show Flight 29 Down is a drama series about a group of pre-teens/teens who are stranded on a South Pacific island after their plane crashes in a tropical storm while they were flying from an eco-adventure camping trip in Palau. The show is in many ways a younger version of the Adult-centred show Lost but sans the supernatural elements. I’d say that the show draws inspiration from the show The New People.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLeG0w3kL8k

Flight 29 Down uses the technique of a video diary as a plot device for the viewers to keep up with the story of these children. It was very engaging to watch young intelligent characters finding their way on the island. The first two seasons of the show are quite engaging but I seemed to lose interest in its 3rd and final season. Regardless, Flight 29 Down is a really good series to watch if you want to see TV shows like Lost.

9. Fringe (2008)

IMDB ratings: 8.4/10

Cast: Anna Torv, John Noble and Joshua Jackson

Creator: J. J. Abrams, Alex Kurtzman, and Roberto Orci

Fringe is a popular Sci-fi crime drama television series. It may seem like a standard procedural drama at first, but the show actually explores the parallel universe, alternate versions of people filled with crazy scientific experiments. I personally had a great time watching this show.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29bSzbqZ3xE

Fringe is actually inspired by shows like Lost, The X-files and The Twilight Zone. The 3 main characters of the show work with a special division called Fringe. There are so many brilliant twists and turns in Fringe that in my opinion, the show is at the top of its category. If you are searching for TV series like Lost, I strongly recommend you watch Fringe

10. Alcatraz (2012)

IMDB ratings: 6.9/10

Cast: Sarah Jones, George Garcia and Jonny Coyne 

Creator: Elizabeth Sarnoff, Steven Lilien, Bryan Wynbrandt

This American fiction show is based on the infamous Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary built on Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay. The prison is now closed but once kept some of the most dangerous criminals of America. The show takes the liberty to make a show around the conspiracies of the place.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V514ACIGp_k

In the interesting premise we see that under unknown circumstances, 256 inmates and 46 guards of the prison disappear without a trace. Later the disappeared ones start to appear one by one without ageing a day and resume their criminal activities with no realisation of disappearance. A special government unit is dedicated to finding and putting those criminals back in prison. If you are looking for mystery shows similar to Lost, try watching Alcatraz. 

11. Under the Dome (2013)

IMDB ratings: 6.5/10

Cast: Alexander Koch and Rachelle Lefevre

Creator: Stephen King

Based on a novel written by the sci-fi legend Stephen King, Under the Dome tells the story of the residents of the fictional small town called Chester's Mill, when a huge, transparent and indestructible dome suddenly cuts them off from the rest of the world. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_Y5YeYrqUk

Now the trapped residents try to find a way to discover the truth, origin and purpose of these domes. This journey forces them into situations where they learn more about each other than they ever knew. Under the Dome may not be on the top of this list but it’s quite a decent watch if you’re looking for mystery shows similar to Lost

12. Dark (2017)

IMDB ratings: 8.7/10

Cast: Louis Hofmann, Lisa Vicari and Gina Stiebitz

Creator: Baran bo Odar, Jantje Friese

The German-language Netflix series Dark is an interesting blend of Science fiction and Mystery. Truly a compelling and mind-bending story to watch. At the beginning of Dark, many children suspiciously start disappearing in the German town of Winden. The dark past of generational mysteries of 4 families living in the town namely, Kahnwald, Nielsen, Doppler, and Tiedemann is brought to light.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrwycJ08PSA

After the discovery of a wormhole, the lives of the families intertwine more than one can imagine. I believe every element of the show is top-notch, especially Dark’s cinematography, which is a TRUE masterpiece. If you are looking for TV series similar to Lost then the intense and gripping story of Dark is sure to keep you engrossed.

Honourable Mentions

Here are a few TV shows like Lost that didn’t make the list, but you can check them out nonetheless: 

  1. Carnivale
  2. Yellowjackets
  3. Game of Thrones
  4. Black Mirror
  5. Flashforward