It is not usually necessary to load extra graphics drivers if you just want a very basic functional screen.
For example, you can usually get a 1024 x 768 display
Try booting a live DVD or USB version of Mint or Ubuntu (no disk install), this ought to give you a better screen.
You should be able to connect to the internet, try out the mouse etc.
You could try installing a few small packages into memory with
sudo apt-get install name.of.package
Where name.of.package is the name of the package you want to install...