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Boyle's Brains

Deleted Scenes from “Drive”

Ryan Gosling ducks behind a boulder and unwraps two packages of snack cakes and blueberry mini-muffins.

by Megan Boyle
Dec 29 2011, 12:00am

Scene #1: Before opening credits
Ryan Gosling stands with his back to the camera. There is a scorpion on the back of his jacket. A baseball game is playing on TV. He says in a hushed, serious voice into a phone, “You give me a time and place, I give you a five-minute window. Those five minutes I'm yours. Whatever goes down I'm yours. Minute either side, you're on your own.” A baseball game is playing on TV. Minimal, quietly droning, tense electronic music plays. “One last thing,” Ryan Gosling says. “You won’t be able to reach me on this phone again.” He tosses the phone on the bed and leaves the apartment.

Deleted Scene #1: Before he leaves the apartment
We see a close-up of Ryan Gosling’s watch. If he left the apartment now he’d be ten minutes early. The camera follows Ryan Gosling’s scorpion jacket to the kitchen. We see him open the refrigerator door, select a box of Chinese leftovers, hesitate, take a tube of “Go-Gurt” instead, and tear off the top. The camera follows the Go-Gurt’s course of motion to Ryan Gosling’s intense, sincere, boyish yet melancholy face. This is the first time we see his face.

Off-screen, a tinny loop of the chorus of “Kiss Me Through the Phone” by Soulja Boy Tell Em plays. Holding the Go-Gurt, Ryan Gosling walks to the phone, almost deliberately out of pace with the ringtone.

“One last thing,” he says into the phone, “You won’t be able to reach me on this phone again,” tosses it onto the bed, and leaves the apartment.

Scene #2: At the diner
From his apartment window Ryan Gosling watches Irene and her son Benicio, his neighbors who he has just met, walk in a park. Then it is nighttime. He can’t sleep. He drives all night and ends up at a diner with fluorescent lighting. He sits at the counter. A slice of apple pie is in front of him on a plate. A man, presumably a criminal, wearing a trucker hat, recognizes Ryan Gosling from a driving job. He affably approaches Ryan Gosling, who doesn’t look up from his pie. The man tells him he has another driving job for him. 

Ryan Gosling abruptly turns to the man and says, “How ’bout this. You shut your mouth or I’ll kick your teeth down your throat and I’ll shut it for you.”

The camera doesn’t leave Ryan Gosling’s face as we hear the man apologize off-screen, then noises of him leaving the diner.

Deleted Scene #2: After the man leaves the diner
We hear the man leave off-screen. Ryan Gosling returns his still-murderous gaze to his pie. He is barely moving but we get the sense that this is how he breathes heavily.

The camera focuses in on Ryan Gosling’s face as he brings a bite of apple pie to his mouth. The noise of the diner is replaced by silence. Minimal, quietly droning, tense electronic music replaces the silence. Ryan Gosling eats. The camera pans up to a clock reading 4:46 AM, then around the diner, then back to the clock, which now reads 5:21 AM. The camera pans back down to Ryan Gosling, who is surrounded by the remains of a Monte Cristo sandwich, a half-eaten mozzarella cheese stick, a small bowl that may have once contained ice cream, an empty milkshake glass. His first pie plate is now underneath another empty pie plate, on top of which is a half-eaten slice of German chocolate cake sitting on a slightly larger small plate.

Scene #3: Sunset in Echo Park
Ryan Gosling offers to give Irene and Benicio a ride. “A Real Hero” by College featuring Electric Youth plays over a montage of the trio having a lighthearted time in the park. Ryan Gosling shows Benicio how to skip stones. Irene watches adoringly.

Deleted Scene #3: Sunset in Echo Park
Irene approaches Benicio and he demonstrates the stone-skipping technique Ryan Gosling has just taught him. Ryan Gosling smiles, then turns from them and his gaze shifts to a predatory, unwavering, nearly crazed one. He ducks behind a boulder and unwraps two packages of Hostess snack cakes--Zingers--and blueberry mini-muffins. He sandwiches the mini-muffins between the Zingers and eats as quickly as possible. The suggestion of a tear emerges in one of his eyes. “A Real Hero” by College featuring Electric Youth plays.

Scene #4: Irene’s Party
Irene’s husband, Standard Gabriel, has returned from jail and she is throwing a party. Ryan Gosling can hear music from the party, “Under Your Spell” by Desire, through his wall. He works on a car motor at his drafting table, the light of which is the only light in his apartment.

Deleted Scene #4:
Ryan Gosling puts the motor down and turns off the drafting table light. The screen is dark and we hear the muted party song, then objects moving around. Ryan Gosling places his laptop computer on the drafting table. The screen illuminates his face.

The camera focuses on the computer screen, which goes rapidly from Ryan Gosling’s Tumblr, Statcounter, empty inbox, Irene’s Facebook profile, his G-chat history with Irene, and, finally, Twitter.

Ryan Gosling tweets: “I don’t even like cars.”

Scene #5: High-speed chase after a robbery
Ryan Gosling does a complicated maneuver to dodge the Mustang. Blanche, sitting next to two duffel bags containing one million dollars she has just stolen, is thrown to the opposite side of the backseat.

The cars are neck and neck. The Mustang taps Ryan Gosling’s car and it swerves.

Deleted Scene #5: Hidden landmine
Ryan Gosling taps the Mustang back. His face is sweating but his expression is calm. He sees an Arby’s sign in the distance. At over 90 miles per hour, tires squealing, he pulls into the drive-thru window and abruptly puts the car in park. The Mustang attempts to follow but drives over a landmine and explodes.

Blanche starts to ask two or three questions but is still too shaken and her words are indiscernible. Ryan Gosling stares at her. The car is quiet except for Blanche’s labored breaths.

“I know every landmine in Los Angeles,” he says.

We see a shot of Ryan Gosling’s eyes in the rear-view mirror, from Blanche’s perspective. Ryan Gosling looks at Blanche, then away at something off-screen and his expression changes into something complex and hard to interpret. The camera follows his gaze to the Arby’s menu.

We hear a burst of static, then “Welcome to Arby’s. Can I take your order today?”

“Jamocha shake,” Ryan Gosling says.

Minimal, quietly droning, tense electronic music plays.

“Large, please.”

Previously - Billy Zane’s Inner Monologue Upon Hearing Five Songs