Drive is a 2011 film by Nicolas Winding Refn which story is based rather faithfully on the novel of James Sallis.
Since its victory at Cannes for Best Director, Drive has forever marked the director’s fame, arousing great interest in cinephiles to rediscover the seven previous films.
Refn has stylized in detail the story written by Hossein Amini making it hyper-realistic and piercing it with pathos and sentimentality to the point that we, after a few minutes from the beginning, are completely involved.
“There’s a hundred-thousand streets in this city. You don’t need to know the route. You give me a time and a place, I give you a five minute window. Anything happens in that five minutes and I’m yours. No matter what. Anything happens a minute either side of that and you’re on your own. Do you understand?”
The story creates a relationship with the viewers by establishing precise rules and caging us in a narrative structure of which we know very little. Also the identity of the protagonist is unknown, a Ryan Gosling stuntman who at night puts his skills at the wheel at the service of robbers and gangsters.
Another peculiarity of noir is that it manages to maintain a dark atmosphere: in fact, most of the sequences are shot at night in order to guarantee the fixed presence of chiaroscuro, through which plays of light are projected onto the faces of the characters who stand out in the half-light. The colors, Refn’s stylistic signature, have the role of defining the scenes and warning the viewer of what might happen.
It oscillates between green, tending to blue, and opposite colors such as yellow, orange and white. The warm colors represent a situation of wellbeing, harmony, tranquility and peace; the cold colors disturbance, uncertainty and detachment. With red, on the other hand, we go out of the color scheme to draw attention to an imminent danger, a symbol of power, danger and violence.
Nothing is left to chance as in the cinematographic shots of Oliver Takác, his are magical moving images that give us the idea of being inside a film, among imaginary stories written by someone else, in opaque and chimerical places. In the same way as Refn, Oliver makes light a subject of his works, it expands, illuminates, reflects and creates unique and extraordinary games.
Dis you know: Despite the driving storyline, director Nicolas Winding Refn does not have any interest in cars. He doesn’t hold a driving license and has failed his driving test 8 times.
Director: Nicolas Winding Refn
Director of Photography : Newton Thomas Sigel
Writers: Hossein Amini, James Sallis
Stars: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston