To quote Top Gear, which stole a march on this kid and wrote exactly what I would've penned after a screening of 'Senna,' "The year after [the tragic death of Formula 1 superstar Ayrton Senna], Spanish actor Antonio Banderas was set to play [the Brasilian driver] in a $100m Hollywood bio-pic. Of course, it never happened, and now it never will. With the release of 'Senna,' a feature-length documentary about arguably the greatest and certainly the most charismatic racing driver of all time, the real story has been told. Definitively, thrillingly and with real emotion.
Big movies usually follow a three-act narrative arc and Senna's life lends itself naturally to that. It opens with never-before-seen footage of him karting in Brazil, and reaches a mesmerising and moving climax with the dreadful events at Imola in May 1994. In between, Senna's racing career unfolds in a way that even the most optimistic Hollywood screenwriter would scarcely have dared imagine. It's all here:...
I don't particularly like Formula One yet was gripped by this documentary which is just as much about probing the psychology of Brazilian driver Ayrton Senna as it is about his championship winning drives. The family cooperated with the film maker so we see plenty of valuable early home footage of the young go kart driver who gradually works his way up through the racing world and then starts winning races. He slowly became involved in an ever nastier rivalry with the cool professorial Alain Prost of France, who was a very different and much more reserved man. Senna looks more and more stressed as the years go by and despite three championship titles, he changes teams when it appears he has a better chance of winning elsewhere. But the rules change and the car he thought would bring more victories turns out to be highly unpredictable. He is visibly broken up when a young driver is killed during practice for the Italian grand prix in 1994 and yet decides to take part in the race proper...
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