Which scene in 'Drive' shocked you the most?


Image Credit: Richard Foreman

With a box office-topping 3-D re-release, the animated classic The Lion King roared back into theaters, ushering in a whole new generation of fans… who can be just as horrified and upset as the rest of us were by Simba’s father’s terrible death when we saw it back in 1994. Of course, as far as shocking deaths at the movies went this weekend, nothing held a candle (or a crowbar… or a speeding car) to the spectacular, but unquestionably nowhere-near-kid-friendly flick, Drive. CAUTION: DANGEROUS CURVES AND MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD.

Unfortunately, it seems many moviegoers weren’t blown away by Nicolas Winding Refn’s stellar noir caper. (Despite earning a respectable $11 million, thanks to the star power of Ryan Gosling, it earned a dreadful “C-” Cinemascore rating.) But plenty of the characters in the film were. In some pretty memorable ways, too. In fact, if Drive had come out just a few weeks ago, I’d be willing to argue that it would have ranked pretty darn high in our Summer Movie Body Count.

While I personally loved Drive (in fact, I’d rank it in my top three of the year, so far), I can understand why some people in the theater recoiled in horror at the sight of watching Christina Hendricks (our dear, dear Joanie) get her head entirely blown off. With that, in the blink of an eye, the movie switched gears from moody to full-on, graphic violence.

Of course, from Hendricks’ death on, there were plenty of other scenes that made you watch between your eyes: There was Albert Brooks and Ron Perlman’s terrifying demeanor to Gosling’s super creepy stunt mask (the real shocker here is, of course, the fact that they covered up his beautiful face) and that elevator scene.  (For the record, that’s the one that made me have to hide in my coat.) You can’t say that Drive didn’t, at the very least, keep you nervous and guessing about what was coming next… and who was going to get it next.

Were you as enthralled by the uneasy suspense of Drive as I was, PopWatchers? Or did all the sudden violence, like Hendricks’ disturbing execution, make you too woozy to enjoy it? Were you more shocked to see Albert Brooks as a bad guy or Ryan Gosling take some scary turns himself (i.e. the scene in the dressing room of the strip club)? Are you shocked audiences didn’t love Drive or do you think because of its great acting, directing, and score it will gain a cult-like devotion in the years to come? Share in the comments section below!

Read more:
‘Drive’ review
I love where this ‘Drive’ poster is going, font-wise
23 Most Shocking TV Deaths

Comments (68 total) Add your comment
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  • April

    I loved it, but our entire audience gasped at the strip club scene and most faces got covered in the elevator scene. My friends I debated the movie for quite a while afterwards, which to me is a sign of a good movie!

    • pastafarian

      Having first seen Valhalla Rising, and then realizing this was from the same director, everything made more sense.

    • jess

      completely agree with you about those two scenes. this is one of the best films i’ve seen in years…i loved the soundtrack too!!

  • Faris

    Although some parts in the end were kind of predictable, but the directing, cinamatography and performances were just too good. I didn’t expect alot of gore to happen, but the film was very different and entertaining.
    Also for some reason, I did actually like the movie score of the 80’s sounds. It made movie alot more interesting.

    • kyle

      Ofcourse its predictable you meathead its a revenge movie.

    • kellybelly

      All of them. Mostly because they came out of nowhere(the shocking scenes)
      This movie had moments of perfection — or a moment — the first 10-15min of the movie. Then it fell flat. The director was so self-indulgent and too in love with his own camera work. There isn’t just the one scene of Gosling and Mulligan staring at each for a really long time, it was every.single.scene. that they were in together. And it was even like that with the scenes with the kid. I didn’t mind the lack of lines – I think actors can act in silence as well. But the timing was off — the lingering went on for too long. And Mulligan is miscast. Gosling had great chemistry with Cranston. Also the violence is very, very graphic and comes quickly, surprising and seemingly out of nowhere. The use of slo-mo action I thought was overdone. He used it in every violent scene at some point. I did like the shot of the shadow violent scene near the end between Brooks and Gosling – that was a good shot. AND then the director ruined the ending as well. With another way too long lingering face close up on Gosling. The timing was way, way off, and it missed. The audience I saw it with started laughing at that point. However, the acting was good all around in this move and the director did have some good ideas. Cinematography was gorgeous – loved the look of LA. But I felt the director was trying way too hard to be a throw back to the70’s noir movie style. You could feel his effort all over the place.

      • Jon

        Just giving my opinion, not trying to be mean. The first 20-30 minutes is really a whole different type of mood. If you liked that the best, then maybe you don’t like these type of movies. Do you watch Coen movies? They start happier and with a different tone, but it is inevitable that crap hits the fan. I watched a behind the scenes clip (so i wont claim this as my own), but Ryan Gosling said he and the director wanted to make it seem like a dream (one that is alright, then turns into a nightmare). Would you agree, the slow mos, violence, and awkwardness makes more sense if you view it as a dream? Have you ever had awkwardly long moments of silence with someone? Also, do you think real gangster or mob violence is lighthearted or anticipated? I am sure stuff happens exactly like that, and it is brutal. With the lingering on Gosling’s face, you get a real good sense of what he is thinking, and the events he just went through. You also get a bigger sense of the fact he is a bit psycho and it lets everything sink in. Life is awkward, and weird things happen.

        As the author of the article said, moviegoers weren’t blown away. Moviegoers want huge explosions, limos jumping 100 foot chasms (2012), unrealistic fight scenes, where guys get punched a million times. Drive, like many of the Coen films (as you can tell I like Coen films), focus on creating a sense of how raw, unpredictable, and harsh life can be. Especially if you put yourself in a bad position.

  • Jacob

    All of them. Least shocking was Ron Pearlman’s demise. But yeah, I’ll never be able to watch Broadcast News the same way again. I think that about sums it up.

    • Jacob

      Also, not shocked audiences didn’t like it. This was art house fare, and I’m actually surprised it got a wide release. Still, I’m glad it fared well financially. I really enjoyed it. A familiar story well-told is always something I can get behind.

  • Faris

    Also the scene that shocked was the elevator scene…..even when i shut my eyes, i can still hear the bones and skull cracking.

  • Lydia Roberts

    The voluptuous, sexy and talented Christina Hendricks deserved to have a larger role in this and in her small role she proved her talent once and for all to those who can’t see past her voluptuous curves. I hope she only does leading roles from now on. She shouldn’t be playing second fiddle to Carey Mulligan in this and to Sarah Jessica Parker in I Don’t Know How She Does It.

  • Reed

    One dude in the audience started laughing when that dude got stabbed with a fork. For being a silent independent feeling film the first half of the movie the violence is quite a shock.

    The film was awesome though.

    • LOL

      The laughing dude is a tool and will probably meet a similar demise one day due to his stupidity.

      • Viviane

        Chill out, it may be irritating, but it’s not the biggest crime in the universe.

  • Rovena

    I hope that Drive’s Ron Perlman only does theatrically released films from now on. He is an underrated actor and shouldn’t be doing straight to DVD films.

  • Etched

    I had to close my eyes and ears during the elevator scene!!!

  • escargotfast

    Unfortunately, this was another movie totally misrepresented by the trailer. I went in expecting a lot of action and instead got agonizingly long stretches of silence and tracking shots. I almost fell asleep but kept myself awake by timing how long the pauses were between dialogue.

    • Cordy

      And here we have the problem with the general moviegoing public.

      • LOL

        Amen Cordy.

    • ST

      I agree. I thought this would be an action movie with some violence (it’s rated R after all) so I was excited when my husband wanted to go see it. The first 2/3’s of the movie was pretty good, if a bit slow (I swear Ryan Gosling probably only had to memerize 1 page of dialogue given his monosylablic responses) but then Christina Hendricks just had to die. After that, I’m pretty much cowered in my seat with my eyes closed and fingers in my ears (even the noises of the killings were gruesome) and I hated that. It was way too much for me. I’ll probably like this better if its on TBS in a couple of years and all of those scenes are cut out. I’m really not sure why it had to be so graphic. And I wasn’t clear on why Ryan’s character did all of that for 12 year old Carey Mulligan. They didn’t have much chemistry and it really didn’t make sense. I still love Ryan and think he could another action flick but this movie is not one I’ll sit thru again.

      • Johnnie

        You sound like an idiot who wants books, TV shows and movies spoon fed and denuded of anything remotely interesting. God, the lowest common denominator in America is getting lower and lower.

      • LOL

        Johnnie is right on. ST should never leave the house.

      • Jon

        Its not an action movie. Also, Ryan Gosling’s character is a psychopath. He wants to get revenge on people so he helps. He thinks Carey is a good person.

      • Viviane

        LOL and Johnnie, I enjoyed the movie, but I refuse to categorize someone who was bothered by the violence as an “idiot” who “should never leave the house”. I may not share ST’s views, but I respect her well-articulated opinion.

    • Brynn

      This literally is in my top 2 favorite movies of all time. I can accept that some people won’t like the movie and that is because it is simply in a different league than most of the trash that comes out in theaters. It’s IMDB rating is currently an 8.8, which would just about put in in the top 15 movies of all time if that rating holds up on IMDB’s top 250 list. The cinematography, music, acting, and overall tension was second to none, and as for the gore, anybody who isn’t a neanderthal can do 30 seconds of research on any film and know approximately what the content will be like. Great movie and deserves every accolade possible!

      • Jon

        I agree with you. Reading reviews about movies doesn’t spoil them. It allows you to know what you are getting into, and have a good idea if you will like it. I was pumped for a month to see this movie, and knew, by the research I did, that it would have the type of feeling it did. Rotten Tomato critics even say it has unexpected and graphic violence.

    • Jon

      Star Wars fan?

  • Duke

    The film got huge reactions at my theater, and conversations going and isn’t that what movies should do? Was this man doing the right thing or just a lunatic? One things for sure the most shocking scene is in my opinion the strip club, especially since people now know what he’s capable of

  • Bri

    People didn’t like this movie? Everyone in my theater seemed to have enjoyed it! It was a pretty fantastic movie. I was completely shocked, but in a good way.

  • Cordy

    I think most shockign to me was the extent to which the Driver really went crazy in the elevator. The last shot of the guy with no head was extremely brutal.

    And I agree with others, I’m nto surprised general audiences didnt love the movie. Even though it has great action and some gory parts, the majority of the movie is pure srthouse tension. That’s not something anyone looking for a new fast & furious was going to appreciate, and besides it actually getting great reviews, the marketing didnt do much to warn people that you had to have a brain to enjoy it. Every person whose opinion I respect on film loved it. I also know a lot who despised it but when it comes to film we have very different opinions

  • Captain Average

    I gave Drive and A – it’s definitely one of my favourite movies, so far, this year. The elevator scene was the most disturbing, for me – but Albert Brooks’ whole performance was a close second [Oscar®! Can we talk?].

  • Thad


  • LOL

    This movie isn’t crap, that’s why America doesn’t love it!

    • Anti-LOL Group Inc.


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