Drive: A Scorpionic-kind-of-movie
Drive, the recent movie which came out starring Ryan Gosling, is dripping with astrological symbolism, albeit inadvertently. Throughout the movie, he wears a gold bomber jacket with a gigantic Scorpio emblem on the back (somehow he still affords to be sexy).
At first, I thought the director (Hossein Amini) might be dialed into the transformative power of the corresponding Zodiac sign represented by the Scorpion – Scorpio – though his power animal selection might have had more to do with fable of the frog and the scorpion than any ode to the Zodiac. Even so, Ryan’s character of ( ) was that sort of potent force of nature, with passion bordering of violence, that has come to define the this complex sign.
The story of the frog and scorpion (of which I wasn’t even familiar until Ryan’s character mentioned it in the movie) tells of a scorpion who wants to get a ride across the river on the frog’s back. The frog is apprehensive, knowing of the deadly sting of the scorpion but the scorpion assuages the frog’s fears, asking him what would be the use of stinging the frog because then the frog would sink and they would both drown. So the frog agrees to give him a ride — the argument was logical enough — and half-way across the river, the scorpion stings him anyway. When the frog ask why he did it, the scorpion just says that it’s in his nature and the fable has come to represent the irrepressibility of certain aspects of human nature, of which Drive — and Ryan Gosling — personify with an electrifying and tragically romantic touch.
The fact that there are parallels between Ryan’s character and the character description of Scorpio isn’t all that surprising when you think of the menacing animal symbol that they share between them. The scorpion was no more an accidental choice in representing those born between Oct. 21st and Nov. 23rd, than that of the storyteller who chose the animal to go on the back of the jacket. Like our hero in this movie, Scorpions have a sting — often lethal — that is a self-protective mechanism offered by nature herself. Similarly, we often described Scorpios as being both immensely powerful as well as prone to defense mechanisms; self-possessed and possessive; conquerer of men and victim. The fable of course doesn’t account for free will. Astrology acknowledges that we have the power to choose, albeit, amongst a certain cosmically determined energetic framework. It is precisely that faculty which separates us from animal kingdom, although this movie is a compelling challenge to that power of choice that we usually take for granted.
Is our nature pre-determined & irrepressible? Can we change? Are we just the frogs in our own life that gets stung time and again by our rigid adherence or to old habits — whether it’s violence, inertia or some other form of self-sabotage? Can we transform our tragic flaw … or are we stuck with our own stinger? Scorpio is all about the power to transform the self and as humans, yes — we can change our responses and therefore our outcomes though some may feel more chained to their animal nature than others. In the movie, he seemed surrendered to living out this pre-determined destiny; violence was part of his path as was passion and loyalty. Yeah, it kind of sucked, especially for his love life — but it was his — and maybe there’s something powerful about recognizing our own animal natures and therein, the beauty and also the limitations. This movie definitely take you for a ride, pun intended.