Drive re-invents the wheel of what car crime films should be.
Ryan Gosling stars as, The Driver, that’s it no character name or anything like that. During the day he is your average every day stunt man, but by night when he dons the gloves he is a getaway driver for the seedy underbelly of Los Angeles. When things go awry and he falls in love it becomes a battle against the mob to protect the woman he pines for.
Simply put this is exactly what films should be. Gritty, dark, fun, thrilling, etc. etc. From start to end I was enthralled in the world of the Driver and his vehicle. Which brings me to my favorite part. All the scenes filmed just in the car feel incredible, as if you were on another planet. You are in this world of the car and you hear everything and feel everything from a deeper interesting perspective. From the subtle roar of the engine to the whooshing of cars passing by you really do feel in tune with the car.
For the most part the film hits all the right notes with a few minor things here and there. The one that really comes to mind is the silence between actors in a lot of scenes. With Gosling’s and Mulligan’s silent chemistry it almost becomes hard to watch as the two just stare at one another silently whispering words of lust and love to the other. Other than that the film is a great film to add to the genre.
Some may be wondering why the film is rated R, I wasn’t sure until about halfway through the movie when a character gets her head blown clean off. They do not skimp on the blood and gore which makes the film all the more absorbing. You really do feel like you are watching scenes where someone does get stabbed, cut or being blown away. It doesn’t feel cheesy, or cliche, but simply real.
I guess that’s what the film does the absolute best, is the realism behind it. There was not a single point of the film where I felt out of place, or that I was watching a film. From the car chases that completely lack the silly Hollywood explosions, to the incredible fight scenes that aren’t chopped up so you can’t tell whose fighting who. Total assimilation into this world created by the genius film maker Nicolas Winding Refn.
If I had to say anything about the film to make you go see it, imagine a great Oscar film with an amazing story, great characters, and some superb acting, inject it with a tube full of testosterone and drive your muscle car off a cliff. That’s what Drive is, adrenaline filled awesome.