Sunday, September 18, 2011


The Flick: Drive

The Peeps: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Albert Brooks, Christina Hendricks, etc.

The Dealio: Ryan Gosling is the (unnamed) Driver. See? Getting all QT up in here already. By day , he is alternately a cipher of a stunt driver/auto mechanic. But he doth also moonlight as the wheel man on various adventures, most of which occur under cover of dark. His brass tacks line is 'I give you 5 minutes. During that time, I am 100% yours. One minute in either direction, and I am out of there. I don't carry a gun, I drive.' So, there you have the set-up.
Then he runs into a neighbor (Mulligan's Irene) and her impossibly adorable son- whose dad is in jail. And don't you know, just as things start perking along, Irene's ex is released from the lock-up to return home and pick up where he left off. Of course, he is chastened and trying hard to do the right thing, but you know this state of grace is flat out not gonna endure. In order to protect his fam, he is drawn back into the life, and winds up dragging Gosling's Driver right along with. Naturally, it is a fool-proof gig, and naturally, things go south with all due dispatch once the Driver signs on. There follows an incredible amount of high-grade violence, without the nuance and commitment to character development- nor the compulsory drawing of the viewer in, to take sides with our anointed heroes. Here's a tip for ya: if we just don't give a brass farthing for anyone involved, least of all the main character, this simply isn't going to pan out for us. If you had told me, at the start of the movie, that I would care about the outcome for Jules and Vincent in Pulp Fiction, I would have thought you were nuts. But, of course, I did. And I was not alone in experiencing this bond. Drive...not so much.

The Grading Session: 3.51 pengies out of 5. Please see above for the reasons behind the grade. BTW- Brooks was a real revelation as the duty bad hat. Check out the new career vector on him!

Notable Quotables: " get to clean up after me." 'Sorry. My hands are a little dirty.' "Mine, too." Both from Brooks. See? What'd I tell you?

Lessons Learned: Well, for starters- don't mess with Brooks; he proves that you really don't have to shout to be heard and feared. A simple, poisonous purr will get the job done just as well. Maybe better. Next: you never really get to back away from poor lifestyle choices when you think you have learned your lesson and are intent on putting the past behind you. Lastly: if something is a sure thing, it really, really isn't. And if the gig is fool-proof, ditto.

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