: . . . I don't think I mentioned that the semi-automatic gun attack (or was it a "machine gun"? don't know my weapons terminology)
was shockingly bloody and sudden . . .
I dunno, I thought the slow-motion and everything helped give the game away, at least a few seconds in advance (which is all you need to avoid being "shocked"). Though I guess I might have been alert to something like that happening, because Glenn Kenny's review concluded on this note:
I'd recommend to viewers who want to maintain their good impression of this picture to check out a couple of minutes after the character played by Christina Hendricks does. That's the spot at which "Drive" has been all that it could be.
But the funny thing was, Gosling's acting had already begun to ring hollow for me, even in the very scene preceding that moment, so I didn't see a sharp distinction between the before and after parts of the film.
: Have others been making the case that the film is redemptive?
Well, the phrase I used was "redeeming message", not "redemptive film", but I was thinking of that CT Movies bit that Overstreet quoted here earlier:
Beneath the façade of blood, guts, and synth is a somewhat redeeming message about trying to right past wrongs and escape the cycle of crime and violence. Not to mention the classic noir message: "crime doesn't pay."
Personally, I don't see any of those "redeeming messages" in the film. And since when has the "classic noir message" been that "crime doesn't pay"? What happened to nihilism and existential angst? When the dog chases the luggage truck at the end of The Killing
, thereby scattering the criminal's bag of stolen money to the winds, the message is not that "crime doesn't pay" but that all our plans are doomed in the end.
I'm reminded of how some reviews have asserted that the Driver has a "code". No he doesn't. A "code" implies a code of honour, a set of principles, or something. What the Driver has is a SYSTEM.
: Were you moved by the speech from the man who is released from prison, and who apologizes for his past
Moved? Not particularly, but if the movie had built on it more, I might have been. I did appreciate the ambiguity around that character and his relationship to the Ryan Gosling character.