Driving is what he knows, it’s all he does. We don’t get a name, a man surrounded in mystery. He’s a mechanic, stuntman, getaway driver, associated with cars and cars only.
This dry emotionless character has a massive presence on screen. Even though he has very little dialogue, the character stands out a mile. With no name, no past, no back story, the film doesn’t need it. Instead, Ryan Gosling commands the screen, feeding off the dialogue directed his way.
‘Driver’ has relationships but very few. Sending him on different paths is ‘Shannon’, played by Bryan Cranston, this character gives our main focus the push in different directions, right or wrong. He’s a motormouth, making up for the little dialogue ‘Driver’ has throughout. Then we have the building romance with Irene, the emotions are there, you can see them building, a natural connection between the two. Until a spanner is thrown in the works.
The husband coming home is where the story arc changes. Sending this character down a darker path, fuelling a violent concoction within ‘Drivers’ mind, causing the whole film to take a different turn. It’s a test of his relationships, how much of that emotional guard he is willing to let down. A different person almost emerges from within.
The movie as a whole has a small budget feel to it, with limited CGI and exhilarating car chases, yet it manages to create a big budget atmosphere with these characters engulfed in a web of complexity, with no end in sight.