Tuesday, April 3, 2012


Wow, has it really been a year and a half? So much has changed, I got a new job, new friends and family (looking at you Lucy) and most of all, have found a new appreciation for the city I love above all else. For now, I will stick with something light, a movie review, before I step into anything more serious.

Drive -


I feel like lately, some studios have been taking risks on established, though off-beat by any standard, European directors. Nicolas Winding Refn definitely seems like he has a pedigree for violence, blood and restraint? This movie was a little different from what I expected and in a good way. If you are looking for a Michael Bay/Jerry Bruckheimer CGI orgy with tons of action and shitty dialogue then this move would be the polar opposite.* The movie stars Ryan Gosling (Notebook) as an almost silent protagonist as he journeys through life as a stunt driver/mechanic/getaway driver in Hollywood who is trying to make it big as a race car driver with the support of his mechanic boss played by Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad). Of course things go awry when he gets involved with the "girl next door"/literal girl next door played by Carey Mulligan (Never Let Me Go). A shit storm ensues.

Film's Conventions

In a very minimalistic style, Refn successfully raises the tension without having to spell everything out for you which is where he successfully uses a lot of restraint in telling the story. The character of the driver himself seems like a man of few words, probably from his unspoken past spent on the road as a drifter. I really appreciate that in a film with all this cgi, testerone infused, confused drivel that gets released by studios. Though the story, in a sense, did not feel like the most original thing in the world, it definitely conducted itself in a refreshing way. Names like Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) were used in ways you would not expect. Despite having those exceptional curves, they did a great job making her look really white trash rather than another sexed up bombshell to attract the audience. Hell, they even casted Albert Brooks (Finding Nemo) in a serious role. The scenes of violence were great ways to help raise the bar of tension as they often came suddenly and quickly. At times, the film is hypnotic with it's lack of dialogue and great use of cinematography but sudden shifts in plot keep you off balanced enough making for a great thriller.


I definitely would not recommend this movie to anyone, as I would say about pretty much any movie. If you like the smash, bang and pop of films like The Island, Con Air, Transformers and Italian Job then this is definitely not a movie I would advise you to see. The subtleties might go over your head. However, at the same time if you like those movies but can still appreciate films with more understated plot points like Lost in Translation, Thin Red Line and Babel then this is certainly a movie for you. Think shockingly bloody violence wrapped in a box with a bow. Very pretty presentation but with a little blood splattered to make a nice accent.

*Note to self: future blog post? Do the opposite of those two directors and you will have a critically acclaimed work.

1 comment:

  1. Aw man. I liked that movie. :-/

    Mainly because of the ending being not so predictably non-Hollywood. Kinda.

    Ok. I liked it because of Ryan gosling. Sue me