Thursday, September 29, 2011

Drive 2011. Late movie review.

Drive 2011

Cast: Ryan Gosling  Carey Mulligan

Writers : Hossein Amini, James Sallis

Director:   Nicolas Winding Refn

*** and 1/2 *'s out of four.

                   (European Theatrical Poster:

"Drive" is a very different type of action movie.  I feel sort of hesitant calling it an action film when it actually seems to incorporate a lot of different genres into one.  It is a film noir, a romantic drama, a gangster flick, revenge movie,western and action flick  all rolled into one.   Some have mentioned that the movie is too artsy, which doesn't make sense because all movies are essentially  pieces of art.   It's just what is put on the canvas(Screen) that sets it apart from the rest.

Ryan Gosling stars as The Driver, a man who works as a stunt driver for the movies and highlights as a getaway driver for robberies from time to time.    He gets involved  with a mother named Irene(Carey Mulligan) whose husband is away in prison.  When he gets released he asks for The Driver for help with one last job because if he doesn't the gangsters will come after Irene and her son.

The whole movie has a great visual style that reminded me of movies from the late 70's and early 80's. It's raw and gritty and has the type of characters that seems to be missing from most action films as of late.  Ryan Gosling delivers a stellar performance even though his character says very little.  A sign of a great actor in my opinion is one who can evoke emotion without ever saying a word and he does it in spades.  Another breakout performance is by Albert Brooks as the mob boss Bernie Ross.  He delivers a lot of the film's most violent moments and they are really brutal.  If you thought Jack Nicholson was vicious with his beat downs in "The Departed".   He owns nothing on Brooks' character.  The movie does drag just a bit when The Driver and Irene begin their courtship but their scenes do look very cool.  Therefore it never felt  too slow.    The score by Cliff Martinez and songs by synth pop ressurectors such as Kavinsky Feat Lovefoxx and College Feat Electric Youth help turn  what could easily be just a run of the mill action flick into a bonafide classic.