Rush is a sports documentary based on the true story of Formula One racecar drivers Jack Hunt and Niki Lauda. The story revolves around their lives during the 1976 racing season and the start of their rivalry which changed Niki for the rest of his life.
The film begins like a classic documentary, with Niki Lauda narrating the events of the race that would forever change his life. The film immediately establishes the rivalry between Lauda and Hunt by depicting the two picking their tires based solely on what the other is choosing. From there, the viewers are given a flashback that shows how the rivalry was started. I absolutely loved this part mainly because it gave the viewer a look in Lauda’s mind.
From there, the film depicts the life of a Formula One driver from two unique perspectives. Lauda was completely serious and strategic; Hunt was a playboy hell-bent on beating Lauda. The rivalry starts when the two meet in a Formula Three race, and they both collide and spin out. Hunt goes on to win the race, and Lauda swears he will repay him.
The movie sees their struggles in the Formula One championship. The struggles both men face from each win and loss for the truly set elevate their rivalry, giving it magnitude enough to be capable of reshaping the two men’s lives.
Although it was based around the two drivers, Rush also showed the reality of the Formula One races and the lives of drivers. It also focused on the horrors of car wrecks in the races. It is an accurate portrayal of the threats of death and serious injury that remain a constant presence on the track.
My favorite part of the film was the moral to the story, that a rivalry isn’t always a bad thing. The way it changed the characters in the film was compelling. Seeing the changes they made in the film made me nearly cry at times, especially with the drama and turmoil that Lauda experienced during one of the races in the second Formula One championship series.
Ron Howard truly found a way to pull the audience in with the way he directed the scenes. He is, after all, famous for the way he makes his films appeal to all audiences. Some of his other works include Cinderella Man, Apollo 13, and A Beautiful Mind. It was very obvious that Howard brought his A-Game to the film.
There are few films that completely blow my mind when it comes to original expectations. Rush was one of those that surprised me. The way it was filmed – tight camera angles while on race scenes, the way it was cut, and the incorporation of scenes offering the point of view of the driver truly made it a great film. Packed with an amazing soundtrack including hit music from the 70s, the entire film left me satisfied. I would have to give it a 4.5/5 for the pure enjoyment I had watching it.