Thursday, September 26, 2013
Ron Howard is not one of the great directors of our time, but he brings polish and trajectory to the Formula One rivalry drama "Rush."
Chris Hemsworth stars as the English driver James Hunt, whose youthful exuberance extends to headline-making sexcapades as well as his who'll-blink-first racing style. But it's Daniel Brühl of "Inglourious Basterds" who quietly and methodically steals the movie as Austrian Niki Lauda, who drives by the book, willing to accept a 1-in-5 risk of dying each time he races - but not a percentage point more. This Lauda is a fresh new movie character, without social graces, hilariously blunt as to both his and Hunt's assets and liabilities. He sugarcoats nothing, and usually says exactly what the listener hopes not to hear. Curiously, the racing scenes themselves aren't as exciting as the real-life footage in the 2010 documentary "Senna," but Howard digs deeper into his people and their relationships than did that overrated film. Pretty Alexandra Maria Lara lends capable support as Lauda's wife Marlene, who helps him through his graphically depicted recovery from burns suffered in a crash.