February 2, 2012

Some initial thoughts on Drive

Drive came out on DVD and bluray this Tuesday. I made sure to reserve a copy of the bluray from my nearest Redbox kiosk so it would be waiting for me to pick up after work. I had tried to remain as ignorant as possible about the film. I knew it had received plenty of critical praise; but that is a toss up as to whether I'll like it or not. I did know not to expect an action movie. The first preview I saw for Drive presented it as a fast paced action thriller. Had I gone in with that expectation I might have been taken off guard.

I was on board with this film from the very beginning. I loved the tone. I loved the look. I loved the music. It was a slow burn most of the way, but it was intense. Ryan Gossling was a perfect lead. It is a main character that doesn't have a name, or all that much dialog, and he makes the movie great. He is badass, but at the same
time he is an everyman that you can totally get behind. They say that Kristen Stewart is void of personality in the Twilight films so girls can project themselves onto the Bella character. Maybe Gossling is serving the same purpose here for men. Not saying he is void of personality, but we aren't forced to make judgements based on a back story, and he is never going to explain what is going on in his head. All I know is he pulls off one of the best characters I saw in film this year. It was played perfectly.

When I finished Drive I wanted to watch every film that Winding Refn has ever been involved with. Drive is so well put together and the cinematography is beautiful. I wanted to see everything that has led the director to this point. I especially want to see The Pusher Trilogy. I've heard a lot of good things about it. From now on I will surely be looking forward to whatever Winding Refn does. In my eyes Drive is as significant for him as Pulp Fiction was for Tarentino.

I just wantched Taxi Driver a few months ago. Drive had a lot of similaries, but when I when I watched Taxi Driver I didn't get into it at all. I can't relate to anybody that isn't eveloped into the world of Drive, but I'm sure tons of other people feel that way about Taxi Driver. I just wasn't in the right mood when i watched the Scorsese classic. I suppose if you didn't connect with Drive like I did, it could have been a slog to watch.

There really wasn't anything I didn't like about the movie. My only criticism is that the plot seemed to stumble a little bit down the stretch. I don't have a specific example. It was somewhere between the hotel shootout scene and the mask sequence. However, it wasn't bad and everything seemed to be back on track by the end.

I'm looking forward to watching Drive again. I feel like I need to soak it in one more time. I feel the same way I did after watching The Social Network last year and Inglourious Basterds the year before. Both well directed, well acted, beautiful films; and Drive is right there with them. It was crazy, and amazing.

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