Monday, February 3, 2014
James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl) are rivals from early on in their career. James is the hotshot driver, more into booze and women than memorizing the track. Niki is the exact opposite, a brilliant car engineer, and recognizes the intricacies of each track he races on before even stepping foot onto the track. As you can probably imagine, they clash, and clash hard on the track. Ron Howard deftly captures the great performances as well as the dangers of Formula One racing. These drivers are basically strapped on top on an engine and wheels. The only safety items in the car are the ones they are wearing, a helmet and firesuit. Howard makes it feel like they are riding a rocket one inch off the ground. He really makes the races exciting and you feel the rush, as it were, with each race sequence.
I think what may have happened with this movie being overlooked was the story. It's not a typical sports underdog to champion story. This movie is more about the relationship Hunt and Lauda have with their cars, their wives, and each other while at their career peaks. It's hard to say more without ruining the story, but it's extremely well acted and well done, and should be sought out as soon as possible. Also, don't go to Wikipedia and look up the history, do that after you view the film, don't ruin it for yourself!
4 out of 5 Stars