Drive is the second of three Ryan Gosling films being released in quick succession and I hope its the worst of the three because if not it doesnt bode well of the Ides of March which he is in with actor director George Clooney.
This isnt an awful film and with a few tweeks could have been oh so much better but I get the impression what I thought were its weakness’s were deliberate on behalf of the director in an attempt to stylised the whole thing.
Gosling is Driver, he is never given a real name just the kid by some and the driver by others, its done on purpose to add something to his character, what they needed to add was some more dialogue and depth.
The film starts with him giving a speech over the phone about his contract with the caller, a robber, he repeats it later in the film but it doesnt work as a golden moment of dialogue it was supposed to be. You then see him doing his part in the robbery, no scenes of the robbery itself just him looking passive chewing a toothpick and listening to the police radios. The getaway is cool and clever and as an opening sets you up for a really good crime drama, unfortunately its also the highlight of the film and what follows never really adds up to what we thought we were going to get.
Driver does stunts and mechanical repairs for his mentor Shannon, Bryan Cranston, a dodgy guy who wants to get the the kid to drive stock cars and make money off of the back of it, he entices an old friend, a connected guy called Bernie, Albert Brooks, to invest in the idea and things are looking up for the pair. As driver swaps abode after each job he moves into an apartment block where Irene, Carey Mulligan, lives with her son Bernicio. Her husband is inside and they begin a very slow and boring romance which reaches its peak with some hand holding.
Irenes husband gets released and scuppers their plans but Driver manages to stay involved by helping Standard, the husband, when he gets leaned on by some gang guys to do a job, they give the boy a bullet and beat Standard up, seeing the danger to Irene and the boy driver offers his services to help standard get the gang off his back, they are lumbered with Blanche, Christina Hendricks, a sometime girlfriend of the guy they are doing the job for. Things go wrong, double crossing and threats ensue as well as death in gory fashion.
Driver is now up against it and warns his friend Shannon to bug out before he gets hurt, Bernie’s less friendly business partner Nino, Ron Pearlman, is behind the whole mess and after killing his friends and threatening the lives of Irene and her son he takes revenge, killing easily and seemingly without thought or passion.
The end is very simple and you are by this point just hoping to avoid piles as youve been sitting for what feels like days, which is unneccessary as edited differently it would have held together a lot better.
Driver is an emotionless loner, you dont like him or feel any warmth towards him, Irene is essentially all but willing to cheat on her husband is only stopped by his release from prison, and the other characters, while more rounded and easier to make an opinion on dont really add up to a good plot. Its incredibly slow and moody shots of driver looking out in his shades with the toothpick in the corner of his mouth dont make him look cool and moody they just take up time which could have been used to add some more meaningful dialogue or action scene.
Its an 18 and the only reason is the addition of some gore,the semi nude strippers arent worthy of 18 and it adds nothing, Tarantino would have made this story into something great but as it stands its a bearly enjoyable how ever long it really was thats left you feeling a little annoyed at the time it took and the result it offered. I wont be seeing it again and cant really recommend it, like I said hopefully Goslings next film is a lot better.