Cinematic Releases: Rush

Rush is not your typical racing movie. No, it's nothing like the Stallone bomb called Driven. There are no comparisons to Days of Thunder. In fact, Rush (despite its awful name) is an all around great film built on strong characterizations of real life Formula One drivers from the seventies that went head to head trying to win the World Championship in 1976. Rush is a realistic portrayal of the different personas that inhabit the dangerous world of race car driving while facing a "twenty percent" chance of death.

Rush is not a glorification of an imperfect sport, but an inside look at how the system works, the differing personality traits, how the odds are not always in your favor, and how quickly life can be changed forever with one little mistake. This is the story of two drivers at odds and how they would eventually coexist with the understanding that they were the perfect example of two different ends of the spectrum balancing each other out. Chris Hemsworth and Daniel Bruhl are both excellent in their roles, doing their best to play James Hunt and Niki Lauda to the best of their abilities. Surprisingly enough, they both look very similar to their real life counterparts.

Ron Howard escapes the standard mold of race car movies and offers up a grittier take on the sport. Rush is not all flash and spectacle. It has an old school look to it with tons of film grain and limited effects. The race scenes are stylish but never too choppy or hard to watch.  In fact, it has a definite European style that captures the era in a near perfect light. This, together with top notch costume design, helps set the tone of the 70's with the type of detail Howard is known for.

At the core, Rush is a movie about relationships and the ambition to succeed in the sport of Formula One racing. What truly sets the film apart from movies like Driven or Days of Thunder is the true life foundation that the film is built upon. Where many other films of this style have faltered in their execution, Rush absolutely succeeds. The audience is given just enough back story while expanding on the ever changing relationship of Hunt and Lauda. See this movie.

-Review by Chris George