Now That 'Drive' is out and Nicolas Winding Refn has blown up, lets take a look at the rest of his filmography and explore the common themes, shots and inspirations that link all his work together just like we did with Michael Haneke, Claire Denis, Lars Von Trier and many more. I must admit that I've been sitting on this one for a little while. I wasn't sure if i was ever gonna post this. Refn is the youngest director out of the list of people I've done so far. And not only that, his career as a director hasn't reached the status of Haneke, Von Trier (whom he currently has "beef with), Tarkovsky, etc. But there's something so great about his film making style. His work has grown on me over the years. I was never a huge fan of the first half of his career, but since 2004 I've been hooked.
Nicolas Winding Refn's (recent) films may be very atmospheric, trippy and (sometimes) slow, but there's plenty of blood and violence to counter all of that. Naturally his earlier work that dealt with drug dealing and gangsters (Bleeder and The Pusher Trilogy) had plenty of bloodshed, murder and shoot outs (which should be expected in movies like that), but his more recent work like 'Valhalla Rising' and 'Drive' feature some of the most extreme scenes of violence in recent years like disembowelment & scalping (valhalla) or face smashing & neck stabbing (drive).
|Only God Forgives|
HALLWAY SHOTS, THE "GLARE" & STANLEY KUBRICK'S INFLUENCE:
Somewhere between 'Fear X' (2004) & 'Bronson' (2008), Refn started to draw inspiration form Stanley Kubrick's work. Most people compared Bronson to Clockwork because they felt the lead characters were very similar in that they were charismatic & funny yet unstable & violent. But the comparison to Kubrick goes way beyond 'Bronson'/'Clockwork'. In all of Refn's latest films he often incorporates a "glare" shot (where the character stares off intensely, almost zoning out for a moment) similar to the ones in Kubrick's films. Additionally, Nicolas Refn seems to have a fetish with filming long corridors and hallways just like Kubrick did in his films...