Enter Drive. It features Ryan Gosling and Carey Mulligan, with a very noteworthy go at villainy by Albert Brooks. The director, Nicolas Wending Refn, did an incredible job of creating unusually beautiful and almost dream-like scenes using interesting music, minimal but effective visual editing, and neon lighting. From the outset, the opening credits established one of the finest soundtrack openings I’ve seen in a very long-time: minimal dialogue, neo-noir skyline and street shots, and one of the best down tempo pieces, Nightcall, I’ve ever heard from Vincent Belorgey (Kavinsky).
For me, the main upside of this movie was the restrained dialogue, which allowed the beautiful optical imagery and excellent soundtrack by Cliff Martinez (using Kavinsky, and Desire, specifically) to shine. The downside of the movie was the seemingly forced “man of few words” shtick that I think Gosling overplayed just enough to deleteriously impact my impression of the main character (my wife and I actually laughed out loud during a few of his ridiculous attempts at being enigmatic). And one last thing: the gory ultra-violence was unnecessary and detrimental to the movie’s design. The stabbing and head-smashing scenes were, for me, lowbrow distractions from what was an otherwise visually and audibly stunning piece…save the high trash, please.
All that said, this is a very cool and unique movie worth watching, violence aside. Hey, I'm no film critic...
The opening credits – which are superb – are below, as well as the full Kavinsky track, Nightcall.
Drive poster by: Joel Amat Güell – http://society6.com/joelamatguell/Drive-Movie-Poster_Stretched-Canvas