One of the best movies I saw the last couple of years is the Ryan Golsing-starring, Nicolas Winding Refn-directed 2011 movie Drive. A huge, huge reason why the movie worked so well was in the way its soundtrack sets the mood up for the whole movie. Composed in majority by Cliff Martinez, (with beautiful assists from the likes of Chromatics, Kavinsky, and College), the Drive OST is a sleekly smooth soundtrack that immerses the whole movie with a fog of cool and never lets up. When I think of Drive the movie, I think Drive the soundtrack. That’s how essential the soundtrack was.
So when I heard that Ryan Gosling is re-teaming with Nicolas Refn for another movie this summer, I got really really, excited. Even more so when I heard that Refn is bringing back Martinez to handle the soundtrack duties. The new movie is Only God Forgives, a crime drama set in Thailand that has themes on vengeance, the criminal underground, and boxing.
Though Drive has its spouts of violence, Only God Forgives is a far more menacing and more hyper-violent movie. The story hinges on revenge and killing and as such the soundtrack created by Martinez reflects this. The songs have an undertone of danger and dread beneath them. Framed underneath the exotic strings of its Thai locale, the songs carries the listeners along the nihilistic narrative. I felt the fear and the pain in the music and this is even before I saw the movie. Though very different from Drive, the soundtrack for Only God Forgives is still quite the ride.
Hear the foreboding Wanna Fight embedded below.
Cliff Martinez – Only God Forgives OST comes out 7/16 via Milan Records (order here)