Don't get us wrong -- as a film, all of this plays to Drive's advantage. The contrast between long, silent gazing shots and Gosling stomping a man to death in an elevator is memorable stuff. But anyone who showed up looking for the advertised high-octane action movie had to feel like they were the victim of a prank. One woman was so pissed off that she filed a lawsuit that demanded a refund on her ticket, as well as an end to the practice of releasing misleading movie trailers. Yeah, good luck with that, lady.
"Next you're going to tell me Ryan Gosling doesn't actually own that car. Do your lies ever end, Hollywood?"
While legal action may have been uncalled for, it's clear that many audience members expected less avant-garde statements about what it means to be human and more of Gosling teaming up with Vin Diesel to drive a car through a truck through a plane through another car. Ironically, Gosling's 2012 film The Place Beyond the Pines tried hard to advertise itself in the vein of Drive, with Ryan Gosling driving around on a bike and contemplating the abyss, even though he's only in about a third of the movie. The outcome of Cracked's lawsuit on the matter is still pending.