Rush Movie Review

Exhilarating racing action punctuates this true story, which sharply traces the rivalry between two Formula One champs. It's superbly well-shot and edited, with engaging performances from the entire cast. And with only one moment of calculated sentimentality, it's director Ron Howard's most honest movie in years.

The story begins in the early 1970s, when two rising-star F1 drivers clash over their very different styles. Britain's James Hunt (Hemsworth) is a swaggering womaniser, revelling in the rock-star lifestyle. By contrast, Austria's Niki Lauda (Bruhl) is a fiercely detailed technician who loves pushing barriers. They clearly see things they like in each other, so their different approaches on the track develop into a competitive relationship that spurs them to the front of the pack. Over the years, both meet their wives (Wilde and Lara, respectively) and move from team to team as they rise to the top of their sport. And their rivalry comes to a head at the 1976 German Grand Prix when world champion Lauda is involved in a horrific, fiery accident.

Morgan's script is essentially two biopics cleverly woven together to let us see the push and pull between these two iconic figures. Unexpectedly, Bruhl's Lauda emerges as the stronger character, with his grounded approach and sardonic wit allowing Bruhl to play effectively with submerged emotions. By contrast, Hemsworth's Hunt is little more than a gifted good-time boy who isn't worried about his lack of substance. It's a likeable, loose performance (we barely notice the wobbly British accent). Opposite them Lara and Wilde provide solid, subtle support, as do the fine actors who fill out the pit crews.

It's great to see Howard let a story speak for itself rather than over-explaining everything as he usually does. There's one tidy wrap-up scene, but it's nicely played, complete with an open-handed message about how each of us defines success in a different way. And the most unexpected thing is that Howard has created a movie that feels more like a gritty European film than a Hollywood production. Anthony Dod Mantle's cinematography is particularly eye-catching in this sense, re-creating that 1970s graininess while capturing a strong whoosh of adrenaline in the race track sequences. And in the end, it's the characters' resonant emotional lives that fire our imagination.

Comments

Rush Rating

" Excellent "

Rating: 15, 2013

Advertisement

More Chris Hemsworth

Avengers: Age Of Ultron Trailer

A lot has happened since the Battle of New York. The world was attacked by Norse God, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), causing a united force of...

'The Avengers: Age Of Ultron' Trailer To Be Released During 'Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.'

Marvel's 'Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.' is currently flying through it second season, amassing between 4 and 5 million viewers per episode. That number is about to...

Ron Howard's 'In the Heart of the Sea' Could Be Chris Hemsworth's Best Movie Yet

Fast-forward to March 2015 and you'll be sick to the back teeth of movies. All movies. You'll have been reading about how Jennifer Lawrence fell...

In The Heart of The Sea Trailer

In August of 1819, The Essex set sail from New England. The whaling ship set out beyond the edges of the map to hunt in...

Advertisement

Blackhat Trailer

When an anonymous hacker is able to disrupt the files for three major banks around the world, it the US government find themselves unable to...

Marvel's Comic-Con Panel Was Packed With "Ultron" Stars And "Guardians" Footage

No one is surprised that Marvel had big things prepared for their Comic-Con panel, after all it’s the biggest industry event of the year. Those,...

Robert Downey Jr Is The Biggest Earner in Hollywood, Again

Robert Downey Jr. is the highest paid actor in Hollywood for a second year running, Forbes has announced, putting Iron Man star top of the...

Robert Downey Jr Crowned King of the Box Office

With an estimated income of $75 million between June 2013 and June 2014, Downey Jr. shows that he's somewhat similar to his onscreen counterpart, billionaire...

Advertisement