Drifting is the act of intentionaly causing your car to oversteer, usually just for the fun of it. Drifting is shown a lot in the movies because it's very impressive, even though it accomplishes little. The Japanese have an entire sport built up around drifting competitions, in which racers drive around a racetrack hanging the tail out on most of the turns. Like most fads purported by ricers as being fast, sliding around a track like drifters do is not a quick way to get around said track.
I mentioned ricers because they are all over drifting like a donkey on a waffle. They think that it's the coolest thing to go along with their silly front wheel drive four bangers. Unfortunately, drifting doesn't work very will if your car is propelled by the front wheels. One of the major drifting techniques is using the throttle to induce the rear wheels into loosing grip by making them spin. In a front wheel drive car, you can't just mash the throttle to do this. The only things you're left with are drop-throttle oversteer and pulling the handbrake in order to get your oversteer fix.