October 5, 2011 / by James Whatley">James Whatley / film / 7 Comments


Stunning, vicious, cold, visceral, glorious, sexually-charged, breathtaking, chilling, gorgeous, arresting – DRIVE is one of my films of the year.

Ryan Gosling is silent and broody to the point of irritation, but carries the weight and predatory confidence of the deadliest scorpion; deadly, quiet, lethal. His ‘Driver’ is an anti-hero of our generation.

The 80s vibe, that riffs from the opening credits, through the electro synth soundtrack and down to the inevitable, violent crescendo, is a perfect fit for the squalid neon backdrop of downtown LA.. But, despite the retro undercurrent, this is a thoroughly modern piece of cinema.

Its dark, foreboding symbolism mixed with an almost continual referential nod to classics gone by (Hallowe’en, Bullit, Scarface to name but three) creates a kaleidoscope of  imagery that – even at its most gruesome – is impossible to turn away from. The use of light, colour, sound, words… or lack thereof on all counts… is encapsulating.

I am in love with this film.

See it.


NB: I’ve just IMDb’d the director, Nicolas Winding Refn, and it turns out he’s directed two films that I’ve been busting to see for ages: Valhalla Rising and Bronson.

They’re next.


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7 comments on “DRIVE”

  1. Luc says:

    Indeed. I’ve had College – A Real Hero on a loop for a week: http://open.spotify.com/track/1aJrVsHwcQMZ8TZ6mlvT5J


    whatleydude Reply:

    Oh yes, I downloaded the album last night and listened to it while I wrote. I’ve been swimming around in it all morning…


  2. AKA says:

    Thanks for spreading the love over to my blog, James. Very much appreciated.


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