Jan. 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM ET
Sure, everyone's got a film they feel the Oscars snubbed. But not one major nomination for "Drive," Ryan Gosling's dark and stylish look at a wheelman who thinks he can shut out the world outside his car?
No nomination for best picture, nothing for Gosling himself, no supporting actor nod for Albert Brooks? Did the Academy members think this was a "Fast & Furious" film, like the Michigan woman who sued over it?
At least Brooks took it in stride in his witty Twitter feed. After the nominations came out, he Tweeted "I got ROBBED. I don't mean the Oscars, I mean literally. My pants and shoes have been stolen" and followed up with 'You don't like me. You really don't like me.'" (We do, Albert! Think of the Academy as crotchety old Statler and Waldorf from "The Muppets." Real people do like you.)
As was made clear by that woman who sued, "Drive" was not marketed clearly. It's a dark picture, not a fun-filled race. It's full of ponderous silences and bleak landscapes, giving you the sense of a man who's completely in control inside a car, and lost when he's not behind the wheel. There are shockingly violent scenes and one elevator attack that comes seemingly from nowhere and sets your nerves on edge.
Gosling and Brooks play it pitch-perfect -- when they meet, Gosling tells Brooks he can't shake hands because his are dirty, and Brooks, a movie producer with a secret criminal life, pounds out every bit of the double meaning when he says, "So are mine."
"Drive" feels like one of those 1970s movies, where the hero isn't clean and there's more talking than fighting, where spaces left in coversations sometimes say as much as the words. We don't get many of those films in a world with movies like "Jack and Jill" and "Battle: Los Angeles," and watching one is a refreshing change, like settling in to an air-conditioned theater after a day of partying at the beach. Brooks was right the first time -- he, and "Drive," did get robbed.
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