We just chatted to Steven Tyler ahead of his visit to SA next week and he totally invited us backstage!

VOTE AND WIN: You could win an iPad Mini by voting for your favourite local celeb in the Channel24 Awards!

Drive

2011-12-13 13:44
 
What it's about:
 
Our "hero", as it were, known only as Driver (Ryan Gosling), isn’t just a mechanic at a garage. Nor is he just an aspiring racing driver and movie stuntman. He’s also a wheelman; a getaway driver with a solid set of rules that ensure he never gets caught. His boss, garage owner Shannon (Bryan Cranston), uses his less savoury mob contacts to help him finance a car to get Driver on the race track. Meanwhile, Driver finds himself fascinated by the quiet and pretty girl next door, Irene (played by Carey Mulligan), and her son, Benicio. But his sweet and endearing relationship with the mother and son are interrupted by the return of her husband, Standard (Oscar Isaac) from prison. It’s barely a day, and he finds himself willing to help out Standard to keep Irene and Bencio safe.
 
What we thought:
 
The trailer for this movie doesn’t give us too many expectations. You think it’s some kind of getaway driver, badass gangster movie. You might think it’s a bit of a thriller, even a love story. You could even guess that it’s a racing movie with a sordid-past plot.
 
I suppose in that way, the trailer gives us a hint: We’re not really going to be able to predict anything.
 
Drive is a multi-layered, multi-dimensional and tightly knit plot. There aren’t any hastily thrown together occurrences for the sake of violence or action. It’s woven together like an intricate Persian rug, with every single action in the movie having a reason and a consequence. There is most definitely an air of mystery, but never of unintended confusion. There’s also shock so palatable it’s better described as disbelief.
 
And yet somehow, it doesn’t rely on cheap scare tactics or totally obscure plot twists. There are moments of bloody gore, but our bodies do tend to bleed profusely when maimed in one way or another. And that’s what I loved about this movie: I didn’t anticipate or expect anything.
 
The things that could make the plot seem like a typical crime-thriller formula are simply catalysts to a plot that’s far more complex. The solid rules and code that Driver uses; the presence of the innocent mother and child in need of saving – they’re tried and tested. But what’s great is that there’s so much more to Drive than love and violence.
 
For a good half of the movie, I almost didn’t think anything was going to happen. It seemed quiet – tense, but quiet. And what’s so artfully done, is that as soon as director Nicolas Winding Refn has you relaxed and into the rhythm of the film, it explodes, and doesn’t stop blowing up 'til the credits are rolling.
 
The unexpected casting in Drive is genius. Ryan Gosling hasn’t really done any action movies – granted, Drive is a lot more than a skop-skiet-en-donner, but he’s definitely not the obvious choice. Similarly, Albert Brooks as slimy mob boss Bernie throws you off. You know you’re not supposed to like him, but you find yourself warming to him. Because you can hardly believe you’re hearing Nemo’s dad ordering hits and stabbing people. And it’s smart casting because it makes you feel the way the characters feel about each other.

Gosling’s range as an actor makes him perfect for the very silent role of Driver, because it’s his facial expressions, his casual shoulder shrugs and what his eyes do without moving his face, that tell you about him. And what do they tell you? Well, that’s what’s even more perfect – not a lot. He’s supposed to be a mysterious, introverted character – calm, hard to predict – and you get all that from the way Gosling acts, and through what we’ve come to expect from him as an actor. Though the casting director used "unusual" actors for these roles, they were a perfect use of the actors’ reputations to garner the right response from the viewer. Very, very clever.
 
Some other cool inclusions, with less sneaky casting intentions, were Ron Perlman as Bernie’s volatile mob partner, Nino, Christina Hendricks as the sultry Blanche and of course Carey Mulligan as Irene, Driver’s neighbour. While Mulligan played her role perfectly, this one is no doubt stolen by the leading guy.
 
It’s great that no one’s really tried to classify this movie under one specific genre, because it’s exactly that that makes Drive so fascinating. There are insane car chases that make you feel like you’re in the backseat being thrown around; there are sweet tender moments between a man and a woman, without any sexuality implied – and that’s so often relied upon in action movies; there is gory, graphic violence that you’d expect to see in a Tarantino flick; there’s tangible suspense that has your mind whirring in a flurry, trying to figure out what might happen next, just so you wont openly gasp in a full cinema. It’s an action-filled movie with a dramatic-thriller plot, sprinkled with romance and a few short-lived moments of humour.
 
As if you needed more reason to see Drive, it has a very cool synthy 80s sound in what’s a fantastically consistent soundtrack, matched to a perfectly constructed score. Some people may even want to see it just for that.
 
Yes, it’s this movie is surrounded with Oscar buzz and I may have scared you off with tales of multi-dimensional plots and phenomenal, existential acting. But those Oscar-worthy traits don’t make Drive some moody, art film in which nothing happens and everything changes.

It’s moody, damn straight. But it’s exciting, it’s fun, it’s funny at times – in short, it’s refreshing. I haven’t seen anything like it. And if you’re not a Gosling fan now, you most certainly will be after this.


Drive takes Ryan Gosling’s enviable skill, and turns it into a suspense-filled, dramatic so-much-more-than-an action film, worthy of all the Oscar buzz.

NEXT ON CHANNEL24X

Add Your Review

(Comments may be edited or deleted at the Channel24 editors’ discretion)
Fareed Mohammed 12/9/2011 9:14 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Fantastic. The movie lacks emotion but shots are moody and even poetic and characters lack depth but are real. I agree that every scene makes sense, shot for a reason and deeply effective. The cast and supporting cast is superb. I honestly don't think it will win Best Movie as I think audiences were left unsatisfied but that's the beauty of this film - it's an unsatisfactory masterpiece.
Trish 12/9/2011 6:13 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
I've never watched anything like Drive before. It's a noir without the genre's pretensions, an action-thriller that doesn't let the pace get out of control. A very coolly realised movie that will stay with me for a very long time. What an incredible cinematic experience!
Ilse 12/10/2011 11:16 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
It should have been called 'Bloodshed' in stead of Drive.....
Oliver 12/12/2011 6:12 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
I honestly can't understand the hype about this movie, after all the positive write ups I watched it on Friday. The best part was the end. I found it dull, boring and insulting to the viewer. At least 30% of the theatre had walked out within the first hour. Complete waste of time and money!
Andrew 12/12/2011 8:51 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Sorry Oliver, maybe you should have watched the Chuck Norris movie on ETV instead? Drive is outstanding!
Riepes 12/12/2011 2:03 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Saw it last Saturday and yes there r no predictabilities...it was genuis...:-) his a hottie too lol but that silent thing he was doing scared me.
anon@home.com 12/12/2011 2:29 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
This movie is ABB SO LOOT RUBBISH. It was SOOOO boring that my wife (who only sat through the "crap" cos she thinks Ryan's hot) insisted that I fast forward the 10 min scenes with ZERO dialog and some crappy music playing trying to "set the mood". The problem with the movie is that the first 80% is shockingly boring - the last 20% ramps up to a B grade movie at best. Be warned.
Brain 12/13/2011 9:26 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
I really enjoyed it, great movie, very tense. Unfortunately I think most people do want to see Sly Stallone or Arnie throwing 1 liners and shooting more bullets than they have in Afghanistan. Pity really because they are missing a good action / thriller with a lot of depth. I found the action scenes more powerful because I wasn't watching car chases for 90% of the movie. @anon@home Maybe you should pay for a movie once in a while? You might appreciate it more.
JAZZY 12/13/2011 3:47 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
BORING!!!!!!From start to finish!
Caleb 12/14/2011 9:03 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
pretentious crap & a snooze fest of note! It misses one critical ingredient and that's to be entertaining. yes all you arthouse lovers, films are supposed to be for the masses not an elitist few who think they are the ultimate authorities on good taste. this film is so far up its own ass, but not as much the critics who enjoyed it! It ranks up there with True Grit, black swan and the king's speech. a bad year for cinema!!!!!
Lauren 12/15/2011 7:42 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Loved it. You actually get to know and care about the characters. Caleb, films are about more than just "entertaining the masses" (if that were the case, soon we'll all be watching Justin Bieber blockbusters). And films can be entertaining in more than just a biff bang boom way. In fact, they're better if they are. It just requires the merest bit of brain use.
m 12/15/2011 3:08 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Bad Bad Bad
Drive is the business!! 12/19/2011 12:46 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
True Grit and Black were sweet. Also if you're going to show violence, you have to you know SHOW VIOLENCE and see the consequences of it. Otherwise IMO it's uninteresting and perhaps dishonest & irresponsible but I digress.
Drive is the business!! 12/19/2011 12:47 AM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Black Swan not Black. Sorry
Temple Turkey 1/6/2012 4:30 PM
  • Rating:
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
Very good movie if you into arthouse action. The video editing, camera angles and style is so beautiful!!!! But this not a film for people who love sensless stupid action like expendables and transformers....
Your Name
Comment
Please enter the following text
Captcha
Your rating
for this movie
Rate Me...  
 
 

Recent Reviews

Could The Hunger Games Mockingjay Part 1 be the downfall of the popular franchise? Read More »
Add your review

No Good Deed

2014-11-14 10:31

This home invasion thriller will have you on the edge of your seat. Read More »
Add your review

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.