James Mangold’s ‘Ford v Ferrari’ is an exhilarating classic ride (TIFF review)
Director James Mangold (‘Logan’) delivers the best racing movie since Ron Howard’s ‘Rush’ (2013) and in some ways surpasses it too.
The film follows Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) and driver Ken Miles (Christian Bale) as they prepare to beat Ferrari at the 1966 classic 24 Hours of Le Mans.
But there’s more to the story than meets the eye. While Henry Ford the Second has been humiliated by a failed deal with Ferrari, they give a “carte blanche” to Shelby to beat Ferrari at Le Mans. The thing is, Ford is a reliable, respectable company, and as Shelby describes it in the film, carte blanche is French for “a lot of bullshit”. They just have to follow orders.
Because ‘Ford v Ferrari’ is also the story of an outsider, Ken Miles, being the unlikely driver to help Ford win this race. And Miles’ deep friendship with Shelby to undertake this seemingly impossible battle.
They not only go against Ferrari, but also Ford, its image and its legion of executives who don’t want to be blamed for the failure of Miles, who they describe as simply “not a Ford-man”, a statement Miles would happily agree with.
‘Ford v Ferrari’ doesn’t bring much new to the table. It’s what anyone would expect from a male-dominated movie about classic cars and one of the most pivotal races in Le Mans’ history. But Matt Damon and Christian Bale bring an undeniable heart to the story you wouldn’t initially expect.
Remaining #TIFF19 Screenings: Fri Sep 13, 9:30PM / Sat Sep 14, 4:30PM
‘Ford v Ferrari’ will be released worldwide on November 14.