He lived in a small apartment in Brooklyn and spent time shadowing an eighth grade teacher. And I think that translates into the films.” In 2010, he co-starred with Michelle Williams in Derek Cianfrance's directorial debut, the marital drama Blue Valentine.
In 2005, Gosling appeared as a disturbed young art student in Stay, a psychological thriller film co-starring Naomi Watts and Ewan Mc Gregor. I'm just as proud if someone says, 'Hey, you made me sick in that movie,' as if they say I made them cry.” Gosling next starred in 2006's Half Nelson as a drug-addicted junior high school teacher who forms a bond with a young student.
In an uncomplimentary review of the film, Manohla Dargis of The New York Times said that Gosling "like his fans, deserves better." Gosling was unfazed by the negative reaction: "I had a kid come up to me on the street, 10 years old, and he says, 'Are you that guy from Stay? To prepare for the role, Gosling moved to New York for one month before shooting began.
Gosling's band, Dead Man's Bones, released their self-titled debut album and toured North America in 2009.
He is a co-owner of Tagine, a Moroccan restaurant in Beverly Hills, California.
Gosling co-starred in three mainstream films in 2011–the romantic comedy-drama Crazy, Stupid, Love, the political drama The Ides of March, and the neo-noir crime thriller Drive–and received two more Golden Globe Award nominations.
His directorial debut, Lost River, was released to poor reviews in 2014.Each actor is playing a pulp type rather than a fully formed individual, but both fill in the blanks with an alchemical mix of professional and personal charisma." Gosling had been cast as the father of the murdered teenage girl and initially felt he was too young for the role. Gosling's second on-screen appearance of 2010 was in the mystery film All Good Things with Kirsten Dunst, based on a true story.The director Peter Jackson and the producer Fran Walsh persuaded him that he could be aged with hair and make-up changes. He played the role of New York real-estate heir David Marks, who was investigated for the disappearance of his wife (played by Dunst).Gosling portrayed a Hollywood stunt performer who moonlights as a getaway driver and he has described the film as a "violent John Hughes movie": "I always thought if Pretty in Pink had head-smashing it would be perfect".Roger Ebert compared Gosling to Steve Mc Queen and stated that he "embodies presence and sincerity ...His performance as a drug-addicted teacher in Half Nelson (2006) was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actor and his performance as a socially inept loner in Lars and the Real Girl (2007) was nominated for a Golden Globe Award.