As movie awards season shifts into second gear, in preparation for a powerful surge through the holidays and into 2020, we're happy to have a few movies to look forward to which approach stories from a different perspective than we see in summer blockbusters.
Chief amongst these films is FORD V FERRARI, a historical drama rippling with huge personalities and real-life theatrics that seem too good to be true. Long in development, this one was certainly worth the wait. Read on to find out what makes FORD V FERRARI such a potential classic-in-the-making. Start your engines!
In the 1960s, Henry Ford II made a play to buy Ferrari. Company owner Enzo Ferrari balked at the sale because selling the company would also mean losing the world-class racing team that won the Le Mans in 1958 — and which had continued to win every year from 1960 to 1965. (For a little extra-credit viewing, check out the Steve McQueen movie LE MANS for a '70s-era take on the famed endurance racing event.)
His ego bruised and battered, Ford II put together a team to build a car that could vanquish Ferrari at Le Mans. The story of titanic egos, locked in battle both in business and on the racetrack, going head to head for worldwide glory, is the adrenaline-injected foundation of FORD V FERRARI. Whether you’re well-versed in the actual events or are just hearing about them for the first time, director James Mangold (coming off the success of LOGAN) promises to bring the past to life in unexpected and thrilling ways.
The film world has changed; movies are green-lit based on concepts and characters rather than movie star connections. There just aren't movie stars now in the same way there once were. Part of makes FORD V FERRARI so much fun is that the cast is led by two of our very brightest movie stars. Carroll Shelby, the automotive designer tasked with creating something that can best Ferrari, is played by all-American star Matt Damon. In the role of Ken Miles, the persnickety World War II veteran and race car driver hired by Ford to head the team, is Christian Bale, an actor of otherworldly renown who is famous for completely disappearing into each and every role.
Since the film is based on a true story, another fun aspect of FORD V FERRARI is a cast full of actors playing famous historical figures! Jon Bernthal, from "The Walking Dead," plays Lee Iacocca, who at the time was Ford’s vice-president. Tracy Letts, star of stage and screen, portrays Henry Ford II.
FORD V FERRARI debuted at the Telluride Film Festival earlier this fall to rapturous reviews, with many praising its sleek storytelling and bold performances. (All orchestrated, with clarity and wit, by Mangold).
The film currently has a whopping 89% fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, an early indicator of both its quality and eventual success, with the site’s generalized consensus stating that “FORD V FERRARI delivers all the polished auto action audiences will expect – and balances it with enough gripping human drama to satisfy non-racing enthusiasts.” In other words, this is smart, adult filmmaking that is both muscular and nuanced; a more classical alternative to all the other big, noisy fare this fall. And we cannot wait.
Want to experience the full power of FORD V FERRARI? See it in IMAX, to complete the illusion of sitting right in the driver's seat as Christian Bale's character careens around a race track at impossible speed. IMAX's enveloping sound system complements the large-format projection to capture every rev of an engine and every vibration during a dangerous turn as the GT40 Mark II outpaces every other car on the Le Mans course.
The drive to win depicted in FORD V FERRARI is reflected in IMAX's own dedication to presenting the highest-quality movie experience possible. We've only got the film on IMAX screens for a limited time, so get tickets now to ensure your hair is blown back by the speed and power of this red-line drama.
All images courtesy of 20th Century Fox.