Drive soundtrack’s consistency, tastefully withheld style and how it stubbornly tries to get the point across, makes you respect it and idolize whoever was responsibly for sound editing. Carefully chosen tracks which are similar in rhythm, beat and mood blur the lines of track individuality and conjure a feeling of harmony. Though what really makes this soundtrack such a curious case is how it is implemented to aid storytelling. I’d say it is rather rare to encounter film soundtracks of this kind and mission. I would argue that music works as a narratives foreteller. From the very first seconds it sets the tone for the rest of the film. Synthetic, electronic beats. Duo of male and female vocals, one representing a darker, non-human side expressing his hidden, restrained thoughts and desires as well as untold truth about him.
I’m giving you a night call to tell you how I feel, I want to drive you through the night, down the hills , I’m gonna tell you something you don’t want to hear, I’m gonna show you where it’s dark, but have no fear.
The other voice is a complete contrast - a gentle, bright female voice which struggles to understand its fellow companion. It’s curious, soft and overwhelming.
There something inside you, It’s hard to explain, They’re talking about you boy, But you’re still the same.
It outlines the ongoing struggle of the actual film characters throughout the film. Both failing to contemplate and decipher each other. Meanwhile rest of the world seems to be just a temporary obstacle. This film seems to thrive on intertextuality, and rather than having a simply aesthetic value music seems to be a tool to represent secret desires, dreams and motivations of the characters we see. Thus’ it could be said that lyrics have a “speak for” function. Soundtrack directly interferes and tries to feed you the message that the character holds. As said before, in comparison to some soundtracks which are used for pure aesthetical reasons and as emotional irritants, it’s surprisingly refreshing and effective.
If observing this film audience might start to wonder about the main male characters motivation and why he makes the decisions he makes as the story progresses, they ought to hear these two lines from lyrics that are constantly played throughout the film and it should become much clearer.
A real human being, And a real hero.
The main character strives to be a hero, it’s his own personal mission. Throughout the film he seems to be more of a machine, someone who doesn’t feel, doesn’t respond or react as your “average Joe” would. It could be that the lyrics also try to notify us of his alienation from the world, character doesn’t belong to this world. On some occasions it seems that he’s even above law and rules. He’s like an outdated knight in modern world, whose heroism is ironically triggered by love towards the “single” mother in need. As soon as he takes on his heroic mission it becomes clear that only tragedy can solve this story, yet this feeling of doom and irreversible chain of destiny only adds to an already solid film as a whole.
- Ilvo K.