Centering around a man-with-no-name Hollywood stunt actor (Ryan Gosling) who moonlights as a getaway driver, this protagonist meets a woman and her son, fosters a relationship and real love for them. This relationship is later at stake due to the woman’s husband and his connection to the LA underworld-- it pulls him in deeper and deeper and he assumes a superhero role to save the only relationship he has. Drive is not a car flick. It is a film about love and romance, the wedge driven between both, and the drive to save what is good and innocent.
For the poster and packaging, rather than explore Ryan Gosling's character directly, I wanted to explore the motif / metaphor that is (surprisingly) only mentioned once in the film: The parable of the Scorpion and the Frog from Aesop's Fables. The Driver is highlighted by a jacket with a scorpion on the back. While this may be an analogy to Aesop's selfless frog, he also has qualities of the scorpion, as he is near unstoppably violent in his drive to save and protect what is good. He becomes a super-antihero in the process. This violence becomes, as the scorpion explains in parable, "his nature." The violently jagged type fragments the LA skyline, just as all that is in the protagonist's life shatters.