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Movie review: Drive


Haley Shircliff

Staff writer

“Drive” (2011) is an adaptation of James Sallis’s novel “Drive” (2005), starring Ryan Gosling as “Driver,” his name is never revealed in the film. Ryan Gosling actually chose director Nicolas Winding Refn for the project. It opened in theaters September 16, 2011, after being shown in a number of film festivals.

The movie does not stray much from the original novel. Ryan Gosling’s character plays a mechanic during the day and an anonymous getaway driver by night. Driver also does occasional stunt driver work for
movies. His boss and agent Shannon (Bryan Cranston) is like a father to Driver, a neglectful, exploitative father. The film begins quietly and picks up as Driver carefully and skillfully evades cop cars and a police helicopter to help two burglars get away. Driver is very calm and quiet which contrasts vastly when Driver becomes very verbal as he threatens people. He always makes the point of never working with the same crooks twice and only gives them five minutes to do what they need.

Shannon approaches Bernie Rose (Albert Brooks) a Jewish mobster, for money to back Driver in a NASCAR race. Bernie now becomes involved with Driver financially and leads to complications and betrayal throughout the movie. Ron Perlman plays Bernie’s violent and greedy partner.

After helping his neighbor with her broken down car, Driver becomes involved with his neighbor Irene (Carey Mulligan) and her son Benicio (Kaden Leos). Driver is very quiet, even as the romantic connection
between him and Irene developes. When Irene’s husband Standard (Oscar Isaac) is released from jail, Driver ends up in the wrong lane of a robbery scheme gone awry.

The film is a very quiet, which makes the action and violence that much more shocking. It is also a very graphic movie, and Driver manages to kill the mobsters that are after him in very twisted and
unconventional ways.

There was also an ‘80s like feel to the movie. The techno music that played during certain scenes and the opening credits reminded me of an early ‘80s movie about driving.

If you like violence, good plot twists, and a main character who is complex, then “Drive” is a movie you should go see. Despite receiving amazing reviews at film festivals and from critics worldwide, I thought “Drive” was an okay movie that I could have waited to see on DVD.