My first thought when I heard about Ron Howard’s “Rush” was “I’m a girl – it’s definitely not a movie for me”. Formula One and, in general, the topic of racing didn’t sound very enticing to me. I expected something of “The Fast and The Furious” type – shallow characters, not the least sophisticated plot and a lot of overdrawn combat scenes. But what I saw made me take back my words.
The story concentrates around the competition between two leading Formula One drivers of the 70 – James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl). Their contrastive characters constitute the axis of the plot. On the one hand we have Hunt – a handsome womanizer and spendthrift who compares his race-car to a coffin, yet cannot live without the constant surge of adrenaline. On the other there is Niki Lauda – a cold-blooded professional, consequently climbing up the career ladder and winning trophy after trophy.
Hunt and Lauda, despite of being rivals, in an extraordinary way influence one another – one’s successes give the other motivation to aim higher. One may wonder if they compete only for victory, fame and money, or rather for domination and proving who is better. Their determination is so strong that they are ready to put their lives on the line.
Both Hemsworth and Bruhl showed their artistry in the movie. Their play and masterful characterization create the impression that we look at Lauda and Hunt themselves. The fragments of authentic races also create the impression that the audience is witnessing a real competition. All this, accompanied by music by Hans Zimmer interlaced with a loud roar of engines, creates a long-remembered experience.
“Rush” surprised me in a positive way. The fans of Formula One finally received a movie that presents the discipline in such a way that it may appeal even to people who are complete ignorant in the field of racing, just like me. “Rush” will guarantee you an extreme ride – you’d better fasten your seatbelts!