The Driver's Seat [DVD] [1974]

Elizabeth Taylor didn't make a whole lot of movies stranger and more misguided than The Driver's Seat (aka Identikit and Psychotic), and this DVD release of the film from Cheezy Flicks doesn't do much to mend the film's reputation. This edition of The Driver's Seat has been transferred to disc in pan-and-scan format in the full-frame aspect ratio of 1.33:1; the film was obviously shot in widescreen, and the characters and action frequently drifts off-screen without the image moving to keep up with it, rendering this transfer especially confusing. The source material for this disc appears to have been a VHS video, and the image quality is often harsh and washed out; to look at this disc, one would hardly guess this film had been shot by the legendary cinematographer Vittorio Storaro. The audio has been mastered in PCM Stereo (preserving a monophonic sound track), and boasts somewhat higher quality than the image, but not by a great amount. The film is in English, with no multiple language options or subtitles included. Bonus materials include previews of other CheezyFlicks releases and two drive-in intermission spots; most of the extras appear to have been sourced from tapes in visibly worse shape than the feature, and often look smeary and distorted. In short, this is a mediocre DVD release of an undistinguished film, and while one isn't likely to find it looking any better, videophiles will be not be impressed with the quality of this disc.
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The Driver's Seat
A beautiful but mysterious woman goes on a journey that has dangerous consequences for her and those around her in this offbeat, arty drama from Italian filmmaker Giuseppe Patroni Griffi. Lise (Elizabeth Taylor) is a woman edging into middle age who is nearing the end of her emotional rope. Needing some time away from her job and responsibilities, Lise flies to Rome, and on the flight she meets Bill (Ian Bannen), an eccentric health food enthusiast who makes it clear he wishes to seduce her, and Pierre (Maxence Mailfort), a curious man who is wary of Lise and goes out of his way to avoid her. Lise informs anyone she speaks with that she's come to Rome to meet her boyfriend, but it soon becomes clear she has no specific plans nor anyone to see. Lise whiles away the afternoon shopping with Mrs. Fiedke (Mona Washbourne), a chatty older woman from Nova Scotia, and in time crosses paths with Bill again, but it's not until she meets up with Pierre that her real reason for coming to Italy, as well as the depth of her madness, becomes clear. As Lise wanders through Rome, a team of police detectives is seen investigating a crime that seems to involve her. Also released as Identikit and Psychotic, The Driver's Seat features a brief appearance from Andy Warhol as a British nobleman. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi

Cast & Crew

  • Ian Bannen
    Ian Bannen - Richard
  • Image coming soon
    Maxence Mailfort - Bill
  • Image coming soon
    Guido Mannari - Carlo
  • Elizabeth Taylor
    Elizabeth Taylor - Lise
  • Andy Warhol
    Andy Warhol
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