Drive - quick review

Patrick Sun

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I wanted to like this movie more, but in the end, I just don't have any real affinity to the driver dude (Gosling). Sure, the extended gazing/staring scenes didn't help things, and I never got the idea he really knew what he was getting into when it goes really bad. There are some nice stylistic choices and touches (the whole 70s vibe in terms of tone, cinematography), but having an enigmatic protagonist just didn't work for me. I give it 2.5 stars, or a grade of C+.
 

Robert Crawford

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I loved this film as it reminded me of films from yesteryear. Some elements of early Michael Mann films like Thief as well as some R-rated films from the late 1960s and early 1970s. The Driver character was the best thing from this film and his ambivalent actions even made it moreso for me. I'm glad he's not one of these characters in which his motivations and actions are easily spelled out. Obviously, he had a past life in which some events from that past life were contrary in nature which in turn made him a very complex character on how he reacted to certain people and events today. Film grade-wise I'll give the film a solid B+.









Crawdaddy
 

Carlos_E

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Great film. My favorite film so far this year. I loved the cinematography. Long camera takes and slow camera tracking shots are so refreshing. This is the anti Michael Bay film. As Robert mentioned, the Michael Mann influence is definitely there. But I was reminded of more recent Mann films. The night scenes including the overhead helicopter perspectives and the way the shots are angled reminded me of Collateral and Heat. The music soundtrack is fantastic. It is awesome. I will buy this soundtrack. I give the film 4 stars or a grade of A
 

Elizabeth S

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I think I liked it more for having an enigmatic protagonist. The trailer for this didn't look that interesting, but from the opening sequence, the film grabbed me. It's more about the atmosphere and how it lulls you by the Driver's soft-spoken and almost shy behavior before it totally jars you by its violent turn. It is admittedly way more graphic than I normally like, but that wasn't enough to turn me off to it. I know some don't like the "staring" and "silences", but I thought it worked perfectly for the mood of the film.
 

todd s

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To many awkward pauses in a lot of the scenes. I did get a whole 80's vibe from the opening credits. :) One thing regarding a plot from the end....
Could the driver have left some money for the mother? ;)
 

JonZ

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She refused the money.


I found that one song used twice in the film including the ending to be unbearable. A pretty terrible choice that I found to be totally distracting. The music choices for Bronson (which is a film I REALLY like) were so strong, I found the choice to be a baffling.


Thought the film had some real moments of brilliance though. Will have to see it again.


On a side note, it was kind of funny to see the mask used in the film and come out of the theater to see this poster in the lobby...

 

Russell G

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I was on the fence with this one. I liked it, and thought it interesting and well crafted. My main problem was that I found it hysterically funny. I left not knowing if it was supposed to be serious or an ironic satire. Which is a pretty big problem I guess. 3/5
 

Robert Crawford

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Originally Posted by Russell G

I was on the fence with this one. I liked it, and thought it interesting and well crafted. My main problem was that I found it hysterically funny. I left not knowing if it was supposed to be serious or an ironic satire. Which is a pretty big problem I guess. 3/5


What was so funny?
 

Russell G

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Originally Posted by Robert Crawford





What was so funny?

You had the tone of a film that seemed to be a character study, with the character having zero personality and that dopey, blank look on his face. I didn't find him enigmatic, I found him possibly mentally deficient or slow. Combined with the graphic violence and the ridiculous jacket he never took off (even when it was pretty much ruined!) and I found myself laughing and wondering "Is this for real?"


And Albert Brooks was laugh out loud funny as per usual as the tough guy, as was Ron Perlman when they played off each other.


In the end, I just can't take it seriously.
 

Robert Crawford

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Originally Posted by Russell G

You had the tone of a film that seemed to be a character study, with the character having zero personality and that dopey, blank look on his face. I didn't find him enigmatic, I found him possibly mentally deficient or slow. Combined with the graphic violence and the ridiculous jacket he never took off (even when it was pretty much ruined!) and I found myself laughing and wondering "Is this for real?"


And Albert Brooks was laugh out loud funny as per usual as the tough guy, as was Ron Perlman when they played off each other.


In the end, I just can't take it seriously.


Interesting take, not one I share, but interesting.
 

Henry Gale

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Originally Posted by Patrick Sun

...the extended gazing/staring scenes didn't help things...



One of the things I loved best, the luxury of taking time. Reminded me somewhat of Noodles stirring his tea in "Once Upon A Time In America".


"Drive" was excellent.
 

Michael Elliott

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I thought the film was excellent and it was certainly unlike anything I have seen before. Yes, there are obvious influences but the director took them and did his own thing with them. Sort of what Tarantino has been doing his entire career. Films like BREATHLESS and PULP FICTION really changed how movies were made and I can see this one doing the same thing. It's a shame not too many people are eating it up but doing an arthouse action film was pretty brave. Too many movies today are made for mindless zombies. Movies are pretty much expected to follow the "rules" and give the audiance what they want. What was so refreshing about this picture is that it did what it wanted. The slow pace. Not spelling everything out with the characters. The Gosling/Mulligan relationship. The ending. The money. The film had balls, which is something lacking from 99% of those movies opening with $30+ million weekends.
 

R-T-C Tim

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A superb art-house take on the crime movie. Long languorous driving scenes with beautiful long-lensed camera work, combined with a kick-in-the-teeth storyline (the ending was superb). Obviously not one for audiences wanting a Hugh Jackman car-porn action flick (which this was originally going to be before Gosling came on board and brought director Refn in).
 

EricW

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just watched this and i had a plot question:


in the hotel scene, just before the 2 hitters come in, the Driver gets a call or text or something, that might be a "get out of there" message. what's the story behind this?


thanks


btw loved the movie.
 

Jeff Cooper

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If I remember correctly, that was Christina Hendrick's phone, that got the text, not the Drivers. We didn't see what it was, but it was presumably some message to her, that tipped the driver off that something was about to go down.

Originally Posted by EricW



just watched this and i had a plot question:


in the hotel scene, just before the 2 hitters come in, the Driver gets a call or text or something, that might be a "get out of there" message. what's the story behind this?


thanks


btw loved the movie.
 

Walter Kittel

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If I remember correctly, that was Christina Hendrick's phone, that got the text, not the Drivers. We didn't see what it was, but it was presumably some message to her, that tipped the driver off that something was about to go down.
I had my first viewing of Drive this weekend (via Blu-ray) and yes, that is how I interpreted the scene. Very impressed with this feature which felt like an instant noir classic combining B movie sensibilities with excellent craftsmanship. The film had a very dreamlike quality which was a result of the stripped down nature of the narrative combined with exquisite cinematography that used long static takes, gradual zooms, excellent framing, and slow motion tracking shots to produce something that felt very much out of the ordinary. The quiet nature of some sequences provides a very stark contrast to the moments of violence in the film; making the latter produce a visceral response. From the standpoint of relating the film to predecessors; Drive felt influenced by Michael Mann's Heat; the much earlier Bullitt for both the car elements and Steve McQueen's performance that is echoed in Gosling's driver; Breathless and possibly Le Samorai and even Vanishing Point for the existential nature of the plot and the concept of a individual that works by a code or precept. All in all a film that I am happy to mention in the same breath as these classics. - Walter.
 

EricW

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thanks - that makes sense
 

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