Critic Reviews



Based on 25 critic reviews provided by
Where "No End" is cool and measured, Taxi is hot, anguished, and sometimes as difficult to watch as pictures of torture ought to be.
What one interviewee calls a "fog of ambiguity" surrounding what was and wasn't officially authorized shielded superior officers and key members of the Department of Defense -- namely Donald Rumsfeld.
It’s the equal of "No End in Sight" in its tight focus on the nuts and bolts of incompetence, and it surpasses any recent melodrama in the empathy it evokes for both its victims and--surprisingly--victimizers.
If recent American history is ever going to be discussed with the necessary clarity and ethical rigor, this film will be essential.
Alex Gibney's forceful documentary starts with a single tragedy: the torture of an Afghani prisoner at Bagram Air Base. By the time it's over, he's broadened his focus into a documentary so damning of the U.S. government, it's hard to believe he even got it made.
In the end, this passionate indictment of present U.S. policies stirs both sadness and outrage.
Photos and video of torture at Bagram and Abu Ghraib are the most viscerally disturbing elements of Taxi to the Dark Side, but the way soft-spoken soldiers were transformed into beasts with the tacit approval of the higher-ups is just as profoundly chilling.
Village Voice
Taxi is an impressively blueprinted work. Still images--from autopsy tables, makeshift holding cells, the Oval Office--are selected and deployed to maximum effect.
Taxi to the Dark Side adds something new to our awareness -- interviews with soldiers who served as interrogators in Afghanistan, and in Iraq's notorious Abu Ghraib prison, and who, in some cases that ended in courts martial, served prison terms themselves.
As viewers of his Enron film will testify, Gibney is a scrupulous director, and Taxi to the Dark Side is filled with detailed factual information.

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