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An enjoyable bio-pic documenting the 1970s rivalry between Formula 1 drivers James Hunt and Niki Lauda



Director Ron Howard is partial to old-school-Hollywood storytelling, and when all the pieces line up right, these are some of his more enjoyable films. Rush, about the early-1970s rivalry between two Formula 1 race-car drivers, is in this camp. It's a well-paced bio-pic about two conveniently different men — James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth), the carefree and occasionally careless British playboy, and Austrian Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl), who is intense and serious. Their real-life rivalry played out over several years and had plenty of twists and turns. What transpires will be familiar to fans, but it's a fresh, engaging story for non-fans or those not old enough to know the history. Bruhl (Inglourious Basterds) is especially good, never surrendering the off-putting drive that fueled Lauda while still conveying his vulnerability; Hemsworth has the easier job portraying the party boy Hunt. In all, a solid piece of entertainment, juiced up with a splash of romance, a bit of male melodrama, some daredevil driving and shattering wrecks, and an amusing amount of period fashions.

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