My attempts to have a Ryan Gosling Cinema Day unfortunately failed due to logistics and cinema listings conspiring against me but it did mean a sneaky Monday night trip after work to see Drive as Crazy Stupid Love was the easier Friday night option.
PLOT: Ryan Gosling plays The Driver/The Kid a quiet, nameless stunt driver who quietly falls for his neighbour Irene (Carey Mulligan). After Irene’s husband Standard gets out of prison The Kid quietly agrees to be his driver in an armed robbery of a pawn shop. The robbery goes nosily wrong and The Kid quietly and violently finds himself trying to drive his way out of a bigger gangland conspiracy. There is silence. There is driving. There is some more silence. There is heartbreak.
Clint Eastwood The Kid drives off into the sunset. There is no happy ending. END PLOT
The plot follows the beats of westerns of old with The Kid riding into town in his Impala and defeating the bad guys before exiting via a dreamy sunset.
Ryan Gosling is in almost every scene of the film yet has very few lines and when his character does speak it’s in short monosyllabic sentences. The Driver’s relationship with Irene grows through looks and silences and Gosling’s performance coupled with Carey Mulligan’s ability to look emotionally vulnerable on cue makes their relationship very intriguing to watch.
The supporting cast is made up of a who’s who of current tv shows with Bryan Cranston, Ron Perlman and Christina Hendricks all popping up in what can only be described as extended cameos.
The driving action and the violence is gritty and completely devoid of Hollywood sheen and suited the tone of the film.
I was forewarned by a more knowledgeable member of The Nerdy Trio (it feels like ages since we have gotten a shout out!) that I may not like the soundtrack as it would have an electronic sound. This is the type of score that I usually despise and I think I am in the minority with my absolute hatred of the Daft Punk Tron score but I loved the music in Drive.
The opening credits had an old school 80’s feel to them and the electronic music worked bizarrely well with the film.
I went to see Drive with the expectation of seeing a fast car based action flick and this is exactly what I did not get. Drive is very slow paced with the action and the performances of Gosling and Mulligan being very understated.
Drive gets a 9/10. I think it is a film that people will either love or hate – I don’t think there is much room for a middle ground with this one.
In terms of a short lived Ryan Gosling run – the better film was kept until last.