"Drive" opens up with a similar view from the movie "Transporter" with a robbery and a get away car. With Ryan Gosling as the driver and techno music playing to set the scene of the "get away." Ryan Gosling's character shows no emotion in his face from the scene where he is waiting for the robbers to come out of the building no sign of impatience or anything just an emotionless character. I personally dislike his character because of how emotionless he was. I would prefer his character to be a bit more outrageous and unexpected because of the fact that he is a professional driver in films and out on the streets of Los Angeles. His character is very traditional because in the films such as "Transporter 1 2 & 3" Jason Stathman's character is emotionless just as seen in the film "Drive." I personally think the reason for this is to try to make the character as ordinary as possible. In the first several scenes of the movie there are many close-up, reflection shots. One of them being in the very beginning when Ryan Gosling is speaking on the phone with someone and hoe he was looking out the window, with the camera at a angle showing his reflection. Also another scene in the beginning where Ryan Gosling is driving in his car through Los Angeles and having the camera on the inside showing his reflection through the mirror. There are many of these shots throughout the film I believe that the director chose to do many of these reflection shots to prove and make the scene and create the character that was being shown.
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The sound in this film is very natural I would say because the movie is very quiet. Most of the scenes lacked in dialogue not exactly creating much. I disliked the lack of dialogue throughout the film but the music in the background created so much. Tense building up in the viewer, the scene in the elevator where Ryan pushes Irene to the side and the song "A Real Hero" starts to play sung by College Featuring Electric Youth. The lyrics of the song creates the scene and I believe expresses what Ryan is bound to do at that very moment getting ready to save the one he has a great interest in. Irene automatically speeds out of the elevator right after her intense, spotlight scene kiss with Ryan. As soon as she notices the dramatic fight that goes on in front of her eyes and the close-up with Ryan stomping on a mans face she speeds out in shock. The lighting of this one scene is a spotlight because it only focuses on the two characters at the moment and just when the lighting expands and allows the next character comes in, you can feel the presence of something bound to happen. I don't believe this scene was as realistic as it could have been. The way Ryan's foot drove down onto the mans face I felt not connection or relationship to realism. I felt as though the characters could have grunted a bit more and actually had an angle on the mans face as Ryan was stomping down.
The props in the film I believe created the characters and made them look more scary and intimidating. The way Ryan gripped his hands around a bat while wearing leather gloves in the scene where he was speaking on the phone with Albert Brooks who is one of the most powerful men in the movie. This scene created how intimidating the characters are meant be. The style of the characters and costumes they wore from Ryan being casual and ordinary to the big bad "Gangsters" of the film wearing professional clothing such as suits creating how powerful they can be or how to present themselves to the public. The environment in, which each of the characters are set in is very private yet very open. I wish why the director chose these setting for each Ryan and Albert individually. The way the director chose to create the film is very traditional. A typical person acting on an ordinary lifestyle but finds a great interest in one but ends up getting into trouble and having to face the consequences by having the one they care about get threatened in some way.
Ryan Gosling's character takes great interest in his neighbor and as he gets to know her a dramatic twist occurs her husband is returning home from prison. Throughout the movie the husband gets into some kind of trouble involving money and Ryan steps in to save the day but a big problem occurs and later on the husband is murdered and now Ryan is ready to step up to plate in order to protect Irene and her son no matter what the consequences and what dangers step in his way. He is ready to end this. This all ends when Ryan tells his friend to leave and never return in order to escape everything going on. His friend is then murdered in garage where Ryan works as a mechanic. Ryan goes after the men after he realizes his friend was just murdered and gets his revenge. He makes one last phone call to Irene and she answers but never speaks and Ryan feels like its to late that she will never forgive him so he hangs up and kills the "gangsters." He then drives off in the end and a back and forth shot between Irene and Ryan comes up where Irene is walking towards Ryan's apartment realizing that she will forgive him while he is driving off.
The main scenes that grabbed my attention throughout the film was the elevator scene when Ryan had stomped the guys face continuously. I felt this scene is important because it showed a sign of protecting and wanting between who he really was and what he was willing to do in oder to protect those he cared about. Another scene was when Ryan had first met Irene's husband he came off as intimidating. I felt this was important because a the saying goes "looks can be deceiving." I believe this is what his character did. When Ryan saw his close friend murdered in the garage emotion finally appeared in his eyes and the yearning for revenge came along. When Irene's car broke down at the grocery store this I feel is important because this is when their entire bond connected. In the end I don't think it was about him developing a relationship with the another human being but the fact of him continuing his relationship with driving. It all connected in the end with him driving off. I would say this all developed because of both of his careers his one career of driving for movies and another for illegal acts.
The most compelling scene of the movie as well connected to the storyline was the relationship between Ryan and his skill of driving. Not exactly his relationship with Irene because it was obvious thats where the story was heading. The storyline I felt was more compelling with his relationship. I felt as though it wasn't obvious that he was going to drive to off. It left the audience guessing and left everyone wondering if Ryan would randomly pop up behind Irene after she knocked on his apartment after no response. But no, nothing I felt this was the mystery and the continuing of his life and wondering if he would continue the same path except in another city/town. "Human Curiosity" is what filled the air at the end of the film.
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watching “Drive”, my opinion of the film was somewhat unappreciative in
a sense. Prior to viewing Drive, I was informed that this was a movie
that received several different awards such as Best Picture and Best
Director. This gave me in some respects what many would call great
expectations that weren’t fully met. I acknowledge that this was a very
creative film but I felt as if at certain points in the film, I was
unable to appreciate its artistic value.
One aspect of the film that I particularly admired was its fast-paced
sequences during an overall seeming slow developing plot. There were
many scenes where I felt on the edge of my seat for a long period of
time. Although the feeling of being on the edge of your seat when
waiting for a scene to climax is an amazing feeling, Drive in my opinion
kept me feeling that often for what felt like an insurmountable period
of time. One example of this, being the second of the three car chases
where Driver is physically driving. I understand the wanting of the
scene to have its authenticity, but a scene such as this that as fast
paced as it was needed to give me more time to digress after each and
every plot twist throughout the entire chase.
I also wasn’t a huge fan of the different auditory elements that went
into the film. For example, Driver, who is supposed to be the main
character/protagonist in the film, had what I felt was a very
insufficient amount of dialogue to reinforce his vitality to the overall
concept of the film. Yes some would argue the cliche phrase “actions
speak louder than words” but as a viewer I like to see my protagonist
captivate me with both actions as well as words. The background noise
often times did help me keep interest in what was going on in their
surrounding. But as I stated earlier, there were times where there was
dead silence (such as the elevator scene after the kiss) when for a
dramatic effect everything was slowed down before the climax of that
particular scene which would have to be the brutal killing. As far as
other auditory elements such as the soundtrack and musical score, I
didn’t find anything that was particularly moving in its authenticity.
An accolade that I would give Drive is the strategic use of lighting. I
felt as if many of the vital scenes in the movie contained a warmer
toned light when something important was occurring. This allowed me to
focus on a specific person or subject and feel comfortable during
periods where I was forced to reflect on what happened in another scene.
Because I am a fan of action, my biased opinion was that I appreciated
the many different angles shown during driving scenes. I thought driving
scenes had to have been a strong aspect of the film one because of the
obvious title, and two because the driving scenes were what Drivers
character was based on. After watching the extras and finding out more
about many of the characters, I saw how different actors stepped outside
of their comfort zone in this movie. At first I didn’t think that the
acting was anything worth mentioning but after finding out a small
background of them, I was able to appreciate the actors more than I
originally would have.
My overall critique of Drive is that I wouldn’t have felt disappointed
that I spent money to go view it in the theaters but this is not a movie
that I would want to purchase on DVD/Blu-Ray. Yes it managed to
entertain me for one hundred minutes but it was nothing that I am going
to remember a year from now. Perhaps I set too high expectations for it
but it didn’t move me in the way that it did many other people and I
would choose not to recommend it to anyone who has the same opinions as
me with this genre of film.
What's this? Another big hollywood flick about some stone cold badass being a wheelman for anyone with the capital to buy his time, holding a very strict set of rules who then becomes mixed up in some even less savory business? Yawn. What, there's more? The driver is played by pretty-boy Ryan Gosling, a man whose actions outnumber and outweigh his words? Go on. The film is a gritty take on typical driver films, featuring something referred to affectionately by it's fans as "The Elevator Stomp". If you perhaps think this is some odd 80's dance move, you are in for a very rude awakening.
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Drive thrusts us the audience into the world of Driver, played by Ryan Gosling, set in Los Angeles. He isn't given a name in the film, which in my opinion neither adds or detracts significantly from the film. The first ten minutes may as well take you hostage as you practically cannot leave your seat; and neither would you want to. Driver is introduced to us driving two crooks with their ill-gotten goods, out-driving and out-thinking the finest LAPD has to offer. Everything about it is meticulously thought out. And that doesn't just apply to Driver's thoughts. The cinematography and sound are beautifully engineered. The director chose to stay away from typical car chases with lots of shaking and aggressive camera usage to accentuate the speed. Instead, the camera stays inside the vehicle at all times, and is by-in-large static. Very much like Driver's expression. Even as he drifts across two lanes of traffic with police in hot pursuit, Driver is calm, cool and collected; no wonder he never gets invited to poker night. Driver and the thieves he is driving for escape smooth and clean, and Driver leaves without a word to his associates.
The sound of this film really makes it, in particular how quiet it is, and how much of the sound is natural sound, and not dialogue. One of my favorite examples of great sound in this film is in the scene previously described is Driver's watch ticking. It's such a small sound, yet at almost every lull in the action it can be heard, whether it's by itself or under the mixture of sounds coming from the car itself. This film did an incredible job of mixing audio that is muffled or drowned out. This can also be seen later in the film when Driver's love interest, Irene throws a party for her husband's return from prison, and the party can be heard through the apartment walls, becoming louder when the apartment door opens and vice-versa.
But it's not always about subtle nuances in sound and film, sometimes the best sequences are when the film diverts your attention one hundred percent to a single action. Oh yes, it's The Elevator Stomp. Where to start with this scene, it's hard to say. Driver has just been involved in a bad heist that, through no fault of his own got Irene's husband Standard killed. Driver realizes that he and Irene are both in danger. He explains what happened, and that she can have the money he made from the heist, only to be cut off with a sharp smack across the face that speaks volumes more than anything she could have said. Just as you're not sure where the interaction is going, the elevator door opens to a man who apologetically says "wrong floor". Irene steps into the elevator, almost in an attempt to get away from Driver who no doubt makes her sick at the moment. Driver follows her into the elevator and notices the man had in fact had exactly the floor he wanted, as he notices a handgun is stashed in the mans inner suit pocket. Driver understands very well what this means, and here's where the scene really picks-up. Driver gentle guides Irene into the corner with his arm before turning around and taking his only shot he has with her. They draw close in a way that makes you wonder if they'll ever even touch, or just share this moment for what seems like forever. Driver kisses Irene and she kisses back in a way that says that she wants more but realizes she shouldn't. Driver pulls away and savors his final moment before he will most definitely push Irene away in a manner more graphic than he ever could have imagined. He slams the gunman's head into the elevator wall to knock him down and proceeds to stomp his face until the job is irrefutably finished; that is to say the gunman's head is no more. We see only the initial stomp and the aftermath, but the sound alone paints a vivid, graphic picture enough. The heavy tones of boot to bone, give way to gruesome, wet slaps, in monument to Driver's commitment. The elevator reaches the garage level just as Driver finishes, only to look up at Irene wistfully as she stands outside the elevator, horrified by his actions. And without a word from either of them, the elevator doors slide across, blocking Driver from Irene in a manner that seems quite definitive, concluded by a hearty thud of the elevator doors closing.
The elevator stomp ties together two very different, yet equally important worlds in the life of Driver. The first being his love interest in Irene, and protecting that, and the second being his misfortune in being wrapped up with the wrong people. They are both tragedies in a sense, but in different ways. The story of Irene and Driver is a tragedy because complications drove them apart, despite obvious attraction and compatibility. Driver defends Irene and Benecio at all costs, yet when he pleads to speak with her she shuts him down coldly, no doubt still traumatized by her time in the elevator. When she realizes that his actions in her defense do not define him, it is too late and he is gone and out of contact. Driver's misfortune is a tragedy in the sense that he got swept up in other people's dreams, because he doesn't seem to have any. He spends a significant amount of the movie trying to dig someone out of a hole, which only digs it deeper and when it finally seems there is no one else left, it's apparent that he himself is the deepest of them all.
Of these two stories it's difficult to pick a favorite. His story with Irene is riveting as we watch this man who is almost inhuman in character grow in leaps and bounds, only to be rejected. But his story of mopping up other people's problems is incredibly entertaining because it shows more of the Driver that we were introduced to in the beginning of the movie who is wildly entertaining to watch.
But saying that one side of Driver is wildly entertaining is redundant, because frankly it's all entertaining. The entire film is a mesmerizing experience. Like I said, this film takes you hostage; you're just along for the ride.
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In this project, I went over the women's rights movement, what it changed, and how it succeeded in doing what it did. I also focus a good chunk talking about Susan B. Anthony and how she influenced things.
My process paper and bibliography are right here
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The Human/Nature Complex
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In my 3rd quater American History Bm, I chose to do a performance to create my own interpretation of the reform in American society that came about from Charles Darwin's ideas of naturalism, through portraying a fictitious Realist writer transitioning into the mindset of Naturalist writer in 1890. I wanted to show what could have possibly been one of the ways that the literary style of Naturalism could have came into existence; branching off from the Realist style. Here
is the link to my process paper, which goes into detail of how I went about this project.
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Drive isn't your typical "cops and robbers" film. The film bases its story around a guy and his car. Ryan Gosling is the driver for a getaway car which is evident in the opening scene. The opening sequence (the first 10 mins of the movie) gives you a first hand view on what it's like to be in "The Driver's" world. Showing close inside shots from the vehicle and no dialogue, you are on the edge of your seat while Gosling goes through obstacles to get away from the police.
The opening sequence is a very important part of the film. Little to no dialogue shows exactly what kind of person The Driver is. It's clear that he has done this before based on the silence and calmness he creates. This scene gives us a view of Gosling's character without directly telling us who and what he does. Throughout the movie, Gosling's character is referred to "The Driver" showing his separation from the real world.
Even though the opening scene portrays The Driver as a badass, of course the film creates some sort of love interest for this character. The Driver is asked to be the getaway driver for his neighbor who needs to pay back someone money, which he steals. In this important scene, the neighbor, Oscar Issac, conveniently gets killed during the robbery and conveniently leaves behind a wife. Of course this gives Gosling's character a chance to build a relationship with this woman. What kind of movie would it be if there wasn't a love story involved, especially one where she's in danger?
The lighting in this movie was always dark and colors were bland and solid, giving you the felling of lack of liveliness and of course, danger. The Driver lives a dangerous life, which gets even more dangerous when he becomes on the bad side of the mob. Gosling's character spends the second half of the movie defending himself from the mob and of course protecting Irene's life, even if it means ruining their relationship from stomping a man's head off in an elevator.
As the film's main storyline got more dramatic through the second half, so did the music. One particular scene where the musical score fit well was when Gosling goes to meet with the mob but ends up killing one of the members. As Gosling approaches the restaurant, which the gangsters own, a soft kind of creepy musical number plays while a woman softly sings. It gives you the vibe that something bad is going to happen, but without giving away how intense the next scene is.
The overall story of Drive was a good one; a man, his car and danger. However, the love story was typical and unoriginal if I may say. Gosling's character made no character development and the "love story" seemed to just be there to catch the attention of a more diverse audience.
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Imagine taking the odd mystery and dark filming tone of "Fight Club" and combining it with the fast pace action and dynamic characters of "Transporter", Nicolas Winding Refn's "Drive" is the outcome. Given the two films' reputation, one could infer that a similar combination of the two could result in an action packed, jaw dropping film, which "Drive" certainly provided; but one could also expect an original storyline and in depth characterization within the plot of the film, which it significantly lacked.
Ryan Gosling's "driver" or "the kid" or whoever his name really was, was an over-exaggerated an uncomfortably sporadic character. The opening scene set up what appeared to be a thrilling scene with a getaway driver who was skilled at what he was doing, but slowly faded into a boring conclusion as driver casually parked a car in a packed sports complex and walked out suspiciously, but with no confrontation from the police.
The one piece of positive feedback I will provide for this opening is the use of music and rhythm. The camera angles were very close up but often focused on the background of the shot as the police helicopter searched for the suspects. The synchronization of the final seconds of the basketball game complimented the urgency of driver to get away from the cops. However, the only table setting that this scene was successful for, was introducing the lack of good dialogue and dull characterization of the protagonist.
In addition, there was a huge overuse of gore in this film. I'm sure that all action movie watchers enjoy seeing some nauseating murder scenes or destructive montages, but there was absolutely no build up to the action in this film. As a viewer, it was difficult for me to appreciate the girl getting her head blown off or Driver's graphic stomping of the guy's face in the elevator, when there was no set up in the dialogue. The elevator scene could have easily shifted this movie from a forgotten piece of cinema to a work of art, if there were some compelling dialogue prior to it, or at least some deeper description of driver's character. Imagine trying to bring this scene up in a conversation to a friend 20 years from now:
"Hey, remember that bloody scene in the elevator… with that driver kid… yea I don't know his name, and there was no dialogue in the scene for me to jot your memory… oh well".
Cinematically this was a great movie, and a compelling scene. But the writing was horrible. The subplots were non suspensful. The characters had no depth, and worst of all, the protagonist didn't have a name. If your a future film maker, and are looking for examples of character development, plot structure, and diverse scene elements, "Drive" will successfully set you up for failure.
-Jason M. Davis
By Stephen H, Abe M, Taahir H, and Isabella T.
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My group and I created a documentary on the reaction and reform of animal abuse and how it was presented to the public throughout the years.
This is the link to our google doc which contains all of our annotations, the citations in MLA format, and our process paper. Click here
to view it.
Below is our documentary.
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To view my website, click here.
This website is about the revolution and reformation that happened during the Renaissance. Everything is included inside the site. I really enjoyed producing this project because I am very interested in this topic. Please enjoy!
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Please click here
to enjoy the Spies:The Cold War website that includes: the title page, the bibliography and a fascinating journey through the Cold War.
The reason I chose this topic is because during the time of choosing the topic we were covering the topic of the Cold War and what was defined as war in class. The topic stuck with me and as I starte doing research I found out there was a lot of things people didn't know or realize about the Cold War, I being one of those people. I thought the representation of spies in Hollywood deserved to be corrected when in fact the actual lives of spies revolved much more about gossip. To begin my research I began searching information about the Cold War, to briefly understand the topic before I started mashing that in with spies, and then, of course, started researching the most famous spies and even autobiographies. I chose a website because I felt as though it could create many more opportunities to present the topic of spies. A webpage aloud the freedom to put different types of media and information in a collective space that was available to everyone. To create this webpage I used a popular website creator, Weebly, and kept the thought "If it interacts like a pamphlet than it's not good enough." in my head. I wanted to really use a lot of the tools the internet has to offer and make the presentation different and unique each time while still being informative. I didn't want the viewer to get bored with the same time type of presentation. I think the best way to describe how my project relates to the NHD topic is to basically summarize, similar to how I did in my actual project. War was viewed as combat, a battle, some type of event where weapons are used or people get. The revolution of war began with spies, it was completely different than how war had been conducted in the past, especially if we look at World War II which ended right around the time that the Cold War began. In reaction the the Soviets we reformed our war tactics to benefit the national security.