Thursday, November 14, 2013

Rush (2013)

What got into Ron Howard’s blood? After two too many Dan Brown movies, the man who made “Apollo 13” back when I was in college has made a knockout film that torches the screen with a bristling, heart-puncher drama about 1970s European Formula One racing. On track, it screams loud with men relentlessly chancing death for sport, and off track it screams ego and misery, excess, and raw sex. Sex from Opie? Yes. The true story: Brit James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth of “Thor”) and Austrian Niki Lauda (Daniel Brühl of “Inglorious Basterds”) were deep bitter rivals of the world racing circuit, each eyeing a championship as if it were the fingertip of God Himself. Hunt has Playgirl looks, charisma to spare, and reckless arrogant attitude, while rich boy Lauda obsesses cold stats and logic, profit margin,  and is an asshole to spare. In the eyes of Howard and screenwriter Peter Morgan, a horrific accident literally burns one into a new realization of life, but dooms the other to his chosen path. Howard’s depiction of racing kicks and horror is a blast as he drops us behind wheels and inside engines at every moment, revving our pulse and dread.  A-

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