If you like movies with a high pace, lot's of explosions and CGI-effects all over the place, then this movie will not be for you. However, if you happen to like movies with more deep, and more focus on other elements such as characters and storytelling, then Drive is a superb choice.
Ryan Gosling plays the driver, a mysterious and lonely character who works as a stunt driver and at a garage, moonlighting as a driver in robberies and other various crimes. He has few rules, but the rules he has determines his lifestyle, and how he acts around other people. He's sort of a lone wolf, a bit socially awkward, an attribute that changes when he meets his neighbor Irene (played by Carey Mulligan), as they slowly develop feelings for each other.
As he get's more involved in her life, her husband is being released from jail, and since he owes some bad people money, the driver offers to help him rob a pawn-shop to get the money he needs, so that the bad guys won't come after Irene.
Basically, this is when things start to go wrong, and the driver finds himself in a very tough situation.
I don't want to go more into the plot itself, because I feel like certain things has to be left untouched in order to be more appreciated. The story is by no means something mindblowing that you have never seen before, it's a good story, but the way it is presented is even more fascinating.
Unlike many other modern action/crime-movies, the pacing in Drive is rather slow. There are several scenes that are a bit drawn out, not in a bad way, but it's not the typical 'switching scenes every X seconds', it takes it's time to tell the story.
As a result of the "normal" parts of the movie being in a more slow pace, the action-scenes takes you by more surprise, and it's almost shockingly effective.
The soundtrack is really good, the combination of the synth pop/electro-soundtrack with the pink text (in the intro) works really well to give an 80's-vibe, and the song choices (and the songs written for the movie) are just very good, suits the movie perfectly. Secondly, instead of wasting all of the cash on 2-3 really known main actors, I love it how all of the roles are played by good actors, even the smaller roles are played by good actors, and while the main focus is on Ryan Gosling and Carey Mulligan, it's great to see people like Bryan Cranston (from Breaking Bad), Albert Brooks (Weeds), Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) and Ron Perlman (Hellboy) in smaller roles, they all put on a good show.
I also want to give extra credits to Nicolas Winding Refn, the director. I must say that I haven't seen any of his other movies (though I've heard of Pusher before), but this movie really made me more interested in checking his other work out.
It's clear that he has made an amazing job with the resources, and this is a movie he should be very proud of.
Personally I was also positively surprised by Ryan Gosling, before I saw him as "that hot guy that all the girls like", but as an actor he really did a great job in this movie.
His character has some special traits that I don't think all actors could show with a performance, but Gosling's performance is really spot on.
The movie kept me interested throughout, it has a great mix of slower scenes and faster, action-scenes, and there are two cool car chases for those who enjoy that.
Interestingly enough, the movie wasn't AS focused on driving as I thought before, it has a lot of it, but maybe I expected more myself, but it surprised me with a few other elements I hadn't expected, which made it even more amazing.
It's really one of the best movies I've seen this year, and it's a movie I would recommend to anyone interested in a good movie.
I'll give Drive 9 out of 10.
"What keeps you from giving it 10?" you might ask. It's hard to put my finger on any weak spots, but I think it's important to see how the movie will age, how I will feel about it when I watch it again in X amount of months.
The actors are great, the script is great, the characters and the music, the storytelling, I really love it all, and I think Drive is a potential classic.