This film, The Brave One, is very self-consciously about post-9/11 New York.
This is the safest big city in the world, but I don’t think people feel safer, particularly after 9/11.
You think people feel less safe than in the days of, say, Taxi Driver?
You know, there’s quite an interesting parallel. It was also about a man descending into madness, and about a country and a city repairing themselves after this war nobody believed in.
So, what separates this film from a standard vigilante flick?
The movie is not about vengeance; I think it’s actually about rage. She loves this city but also hates it—in the way she loves this part of herself emerging that’s authentic and real but also despicable and hateful.
Your character says she has to create an imaginary city to store all of her memories, since the city that existed in her childhood has been gentrified out of existence. What are your New York memories?
I remember getting in a fight with my mom outside of Times Square, because I felt that she’d stolen a cab from somebody. She was saying, “Get in the cab!” And I said, “I’m not getting in the cab!” She said, “Goddammit, get in the cab.” It was the first just-this-close-to-blows fight I ever remember having with my mom… I remember thinking, “Some day I’m going to learn how to drive.”