Nicholas Winding Refn‘s Drive “is stylistically inspired with beautiful cinematography, perfect balance, steely cool grit and truly hilarious gore, and many silent eye-contact moments that are ten times sexier than any steamy motel romp,” writes HE’s part-time Manhattan correspondent Jett Wells. “Not only is this the coolest movie I’ve seen all year, but it’s the best thing Ryan Gosling has ever done.

Carey Mulligan, Ryan Gosling

“There are many things about his nameless character that throw you off. Masked by his half-man, half-machine attitude, Gosling is a quiet gentleman filled with pain and loneliness but who transforms into a V-12 diesel beast behind the wheel. It’s humbling watching Gosling’s character just trying to mind his own business but having to kick ass when he has to, but he still has no idea what he’s doing. There are little moments in his body-language (and his character is 98 per cent body language) that show you he’s screaming in his head, ‘WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?!’ And I love that sense of false bravado..

“It’s all in the artful contrasts that Refn uses with music, attitude and the lighting — I can honestly say I’ve never felt so happy to see so much blood mixed with long soulful stares and girl-lead electro-pop. There are so many smart, subtle subtext moments running side by side with tense and gripping chase scenes and classic noir moments.

“Not only does Refn capture some aesthetically gorgeous cinematic shots, but it pushes the noir genre into a quieter, hipper zip code. Sure, I can’t count how many dark mysterious-loner-hero movies I’ve seen, but Refn and Gosling have really done something different here, and I attribute a lot of that to Hossein Amini‘s screenplay (based on James Sallis‘ novel) and the soundtrack featuring Kavinsky and College.

“I’m on the Gosling bandwagon. A lot of actors make like they’re hard-working, but no one totes the rock like Gosling these days (if you ignore Crazy, Stupid Love).