Rush – Review
Rush is the true story of the highly competitive relationship of drivers James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl ) in the dangerous profession of formula one racing during the 1970s.
Directed by Academy Award winning Director Ron Howard the strength of this film lies in the telling of these two unrelenting strong will personalities insatiable need to beat each other at almost all cost and yet be guided by polar opposite principles in doing it.
Hunt was a British flamboyant, womanizing chain smoking, alcohol consuming risk taker both on and off the track, guided by the single idea of doing whatever it takes to win. The Austrian Lauda on the other hand approached racing from the perspective of maintaining both an on and off the track acute discipline to all aspects of his life, with a constant need to look for new analytical and innovative engineering strategies for his cars, with ultimately his singular belief that preparation and thinking would always make him the superior driver.
What makes Rush a very entertaining film is Director Howard’s attention to the details of racing. The racing visuals of this film are riveting to watch as in it felt that Howard not only gets you up and extremely close to the effects of weather, fuel, smoke and grease has on fast open wheel driving, he also allows you to feel the sensation of breakneck speed with some of the best close up work I have seen in sometime.
Ultimately, Howard wants to tell about how two clearly different people can be both fierce rivals with nothing in common and yet have a symbiotic dependency with each other in order to elicit and even provoke their best effort through victory and defeat - personal hardship and near death tragedy.
Money did drive not these two, instead raw competition was the fuel to their high octane passion and just like other famous sports combatants i.e. Ali and Frasier, you learn here as well that you don’t really need to like the other to bring out the best in yourself and have each other’s mutual respect.
Special kudos to Daniel Bruhl as his performance was Oscar nomination worthy as the somewhat mechanical and socially stoic Lauda, with addition praise to Chris Hemsworth for giving his character Hunt a lot of on screen charisma and presence.
You really should see Rush on the big screen as the racing scenes, which they are many of, are truly great to watch.
3 -1/4 Stars