The Winning Formula
With a charm which attracts the ladies James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) is the notorious playboy and risk taker on the racing scene, and it makes him the total opposite of Niki Lauda (Daniel BrÃ¼hl) the Austrian driver who is like a machine who knows machines better than the engineers who work for him. With each race their rivalry intensifies with the press jumping on the two being ultra competitive both on and off the race track as they push each other in to the areas where there can be no mistakes.
For a few years after the turn of the century I got in to Formula 1, watching every race and even every practice and qualifying. As such the Niki Lauda I know is the one who is the former racing driver, scarred from a crash and whose opinion is always held in high regard by those in the industry. But again I was too young to remember Lauda as a racer and the same can be said of James Hunt although being a teenager during the 80s it was hard not be aware of Hunt as the playboy racer as he was the epitome of what being a racer meant to many young boys at the time.
The thing is that I am sure there are many in my position who sat down to watch "Rush" aware of the characters and their significance but are too young to have watched the rivalry between Hunt and Lauda when it happened. What that means is that "Rush" ends up more car racing entertainment than biopic for me as we have two characters; the playboy against the technician, the racer who won on instinct and the racer who like a chess player studied every aspect from the material in the car to the smallest gradient change in the track. And it is certainly entertaining as we see how things play out between them with things leading to the 1976 racing seasons and German Grand Prix at the NÃ¼rburgring which if you don't know your history will be explained in the movie.
Now it has to be said that Chris Hemsworth and Daniel BrÃ¼hl play their parts in "Rush" quite brilliantly bringing out their characters competitiveness. But for me Ron Howard and his crew deserve just as much praise because the footage of the racing is just phenomenal with not only great shots of wheel to wheel racing but also remarkable footage when it comes to the crash. It is the cinematography as much as anything which makes "Rush" such compelling viewing.
What this all boils down to is that "Rush" ends up a riveting experience for anyone with a passing interest in Formula 1 even if they aren't old enough to remember the days of Hunt and Lauda. But it is as much to do with the stunning cinematography as anything else which is the best I have ever seen from a movie about car racing.