Saturday, February 11, 2012

Why You Should See "Drive"

They don’t make movies like “Drive” anymore, and that’s a travesty. Usually when you think about car chase action flicks, the first thing that probably pops in your head are visions of ultra-flashiness from all the shit-fest “Fast & Furious” films that have come out over the years, just because that’s how things are. Back in the day, when one thought about epic car-chase action films, you’d think “The French Connection”, “To Live and Die in L.A.”, “The Getaway”, “Bullitt”, and more besides. With “Drive”, we get a little return to those glory days of intelligent action/drama with cars and indie cool.

Ryan Gosling plays an unnamed man (only billed as “Driver” in the credits) that works as a Hollywood stunt driver and mechanic by day and wheelman by night. Soon after his neighbor (Carey Mulligan) catches his eye, Driver and his handler/boss (Bryan Cranston) fall in with a couple mob bosses (Albert Brooks and Ron Perlman) and bad shit begins to really hit the fan. There’s more to the story than that, I just don’t want to spoil it all for you here, because I really, REALLY want you to see “Drive”.

It appears so simple at first glance, but “Drive” is the most unpredictable and hypnotic film I’ve seen in a long time. Everything about it, from the pulsing synth-pop soundtrack to the Michael Mann-esque character vignettes makes it something special. It grabs you by the throat and doesn’t let go, and has some of the most unabashed and shocking violence I’ve seen in a mainstream flick in a long time. That’s why I’m telling you to see it, because you’re not likely to see anything like it again for a while. See, major mainstream audiences for some reason tend to not enjoy character-driven drama, even if it has brilliant action set-pieces in it, which is why new films like the old ones I mentioned earlier are so rarely seen these days…and that makes “Drive” all the more special to me.

Now let it be said right here and now that this is not a film for everyone. Though it’s received a mammoth amount of critical acclaim, “Drive” has its share of detractors, mostly due to the fact that it isn’t an ultra-flashy burst of kinetic energy. Regardless of what your taste may be though, “Drive” deserves to be a given a chance for a viewing regardless. Rent it, buy it, watch it on demand, or illegally download it (kidding…kind of), whatever you choose, see this fucking movie right the fuck right now.

Thank me later.

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