Having read the various reviews and watched its director, Nicolas Winding Refn, use the f-word at half eight in the morning when describing his new film to BBC Breakfast’s aghast Bill Turnbull and Sian Williams, I was keener than a world championship tiddlywinks contestant to see the new car film, Drive.

As its title suggests, Drive is part homage, part sequel to the legendary 1978 movie, The Driver, starring Ryan O’Neal, Bruce Dern and the unfathomably elegant Isabella Adjani.

It is also, claim its creators, supposed to recapture the iconic, insatiably bleak atmosphere first delivered in films like Two Lane Blacktop, Carquake, Vanishing Point and Bullitt.

In one fairly obvious sense, the film succeeds because it is a truly poignant way in which to spend an hour and a half inside a darkened room.

The character at its centre is a stuntman-cum-getaway driver who falls tragically for the wife of someone he’s doing a job for. And for much of the time the tension, mood and sheer suspense of the film is, it must be said, extremely beguiling.