Ryan Gosling is back in theaters with a new flick, Only God Forgives. The film is his second collaboration with director Nicolas Winding Refn, who first directed Gosling in Drive. Whether or not the second time around is a success, everyone will be talking about what happens to Gosling and Kristin Scott Thomas’ incredible performance. Those are just two of the ten talking points VH1 has pulled together for you. Think of it as your cheat sheet to the film.
1. This is a revenge film.
What may or may not be clear from the trailers is ultimately what this movie is about, aside from fighting. The film starts off as a gangster film but reveals itself to be a story of one mother seeking revenge while her son hesitates to do so.
2. Ryan Gosling only has 19 lines.
“Is it that many?” Gosling says to VH1 when told of the number of lines we counted in the 90-minute film. Gosling very much plays a silent role in this film. His character only speaks when glances and fisticuffs aren’t enough to express his intentions. So be prepared to let his body do the talking.
3. What little dialogue there is is spoken in Thai.
While Kristin Scott Thomas and Gosling’s characters speak English, most of the other actors do not. Much of the first half of the film is subtitled for those who are not native Thai speakers.
4. Kristin Scott Thomas unleashes the dragon.
Thomas plays one major bitch in this film and it’s amazing. She really let’s loose as Crystal, Julian’s (Ryan) mother. From her Donatella Versace wig to her vicious tongue, Thomas is a tour de force that is a welcome presence in a very heavy film. She tells VH1 that she had a hard time with some of the language in the screenplay, which includes words like cumdumpster. However, you would never know it from the result on screen.
5. Drive gets left in the dust.
Despite working with Gosling and composer Cliff Martinez a second time, director Nicolas Winding Refn tells VH1 that his first movie far from memory while making this film, especially when it came to the soundtrack. Those looking for the cool, ’80s sounds from the previous movie will be left disappointed. Refn worked with Martinez to create a much darker sound, which was meant to fill the silences created by the lack of dialogue (See points 2 and 3).
6. Ryan Gosling gets his ass handed to him.
It’s no spoiler that Gosling’s character wants to fight but the result of that fight is brutal. This is by far the ugliest we’ve seen Gosling.
7. Ryan Gosling has an Oedipus complex.
Without giving too much away, Gosling and Thomas’ characters clearly have a tense relationship as mother and son. The creep factor is one for the record books.
8. Actually, everyone is really f*cked up.
Gosling and Thomas (see point 7) aren’t the only characters with some major issues. Gosling’s character, Julian, has a brother that really amps up the ick factor and Vithaya Pansringarm portrays a character who literally thinks he’s hand of God.
9. Vithaya Pansringarm is a master at the art of destruction.
Speaking of Pansringarm. He portrays Chang, the film’s antagonist, who masterfully uses his sword as a method of retribution and is the film’s main source of violence.
10. There will be blood and lots of it.
If you’re not into torture porn or excessive blood, then this is not the film for you. There’s a few scenes that truly get bloody (and a bit excessively so). It should be expected though; this is probably Refn’s most violent film.
Only God Forgives opens nationwide Friday, July 19th. Watch the trailer below: