05-02-2012 12:40 AM - edited 05-02-2012 12:48 AM
I really wanted to like this, it just had so much going for it.
The cast was brilliant, the cinematography was brilliant, the style, the music added real punch; all great.
The opening scene was terrific, it could have so easily gone into a full blown car chase but they kept it calm and understated to show his skill and tact; and decided to do it slow and unique, building tension.
Then it just dropped into an awkward, laboured, romantic plot for about a third of the movie; I'm not againt the awkward, undertstated romantic part but the fact that it got stuck there for so long and took much of the movie up.
The action sequences had hardly any punch and there was no real contrast between different parts of the movie.
The ending was another one of those sudden cut-offs that are either "can't think of anything else, let's just end it" or "we're so indy dude, let's be all brooding and deep and end it where they don't expect".
I'm not saying I wanted it to be an all out action but it needed to find a way to build tension and let it down in certain parts; and to do so multiple times, rather than making the whole thing a single, meandering tension builder and not giving any sense of resolve at the end.
Again, I really wanted to like it and there's a lot of really good components to it, but I felt it got too indy and too stuck up its own arse, it got too comfortable being slow that it didn't go anywhere.
It was heavily hyped and I guess that has an effect in my level of disappointment, but I don't think I would have actually liked it anymore either way. The beginning scene and the audio really got me pumped for the rest of the film and it all just fell apart. There were some potentially brilliant moments that could have even been iconic; but I feel the creators were scared of being iconic and so instead they were anti-climatic.
They could have cut out a third of the scenes of Gosling and Mulligan staring at each other, put an extra 10 minutes on and used that 15 minutes or so to develop the characters a bit more. Added a bit more punch to the faster scenes, used Cranston a little more, edited it a bit neater and given a stronger resolve at the end.
I like a variety of movies, slow, fast, action driven, story/character driven. This had so much, but the plot's pacing was really poor in the end.
Every now and then a movie comes along that you really want to like and that you enjoy in so many ways; and yet you feel massively let down for various reasons, Drive is one of these for me, prior to that it was the Coens' True Grit with that terrible ending.
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