UP FROM THE DEPTHS: The Driver's Seat

NOTE: doors for this screening will open at midnight. Elizabeth Taylor made a long, fruitful and unpredictable career out of playing women driven to the brink of bat-shit insanity — and once the spectacle of Cleopatra had receded into the rearview, what excitingly remained were HFS gems like The Driver’s Seat, in which the Lizsploitation form is pushed to its outermost limits. Miz Taylor finds herself playing a totally nucking futs kind of woman travelling to Italy for a series of misadventures in search of a man who’ll play bondage games, with a hopefully fatal outcome. If that alone doesn’t sound juicy enough for you, how about Taylor’s non-stop surrealist gibberish dialogue, containing such bon mots as “When I diet, I diet and when I orgasm, I orgasm! I don’t believe in mixing the two cultures!”, and “I sense a lack of absence”? And an Andy Warhol cameo? And an avalanche of white/off-white post-modern décor? And a director who seems so intent on tricking the film out with deliberately elliptical craziness that he forgets to reign in even a smidge of Taylor’s wonderful overwroughtness? This one, as we say in Cinefamily-speak, is “a real ripper.”
Dir. Giuseppe Patroni Griffi, 1974, 35mm, 102 min.

Watch the bonkers trailer for “The Driver’s Seat”!
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