“Ford vs Ferrari” , or “Le Mans ’66” in UK and other Europe countries, is a James Mangold-directed sports film. It tells the story of a team of American engineers and designers, led by Carroll Shelby and British driver, Ken Miles, who are hired by Henry Ford II to build a new racing car in order to defeat the Ferrari team at the 1966 24 Hours of Le Mans race in France.
My first reaction, coming out of this movie, was to tell my boyfriend that this is a very American movie. And I’m not saying it in a bad way. It just had the classical American success formula. Take two charismatic characters, one villain, add a challenge and a desperation point, and wrap it up with a pretty bow. “Ford vs Ferrari” followed the formula to the T. The only thing that went off mark was the ending. It surprised me, but I loved it, even if it was bittersweet.
Visually, it looked great; the editing is especially good, which is too be expected and required in a sports movie. The sets and costumes are on point, and the cars are amazing. A major reason for the success of this movie can definitely be credited to the cast. Matt Damon is talented, and it’s always a pleasure to see Caitriona Balfe and Jon Bernthal on screen. I absolutely hated Josh Lucas’ character, and that’s his merit, he did a wonderful job. But the star of the film is Christian Bale. He is the heart and soul of the film, and the actor carried the story beautifully, together with Matt Damon, with whom he had a great partnership.
The plotline structure and the main themes don’t bring anything new to the table, but they all work very well in “Ford vs Ferrari”. And together with the cast, who is outstanding, it creates an entertaining movie that I would recommend to anyone. Even if it is a bit long (but not boring).
p.s. In the past, it would have cleaned up the awards season. In the 2020 Oscars ceremony, it might have a few chances, but I’m not expecting a lot. Maybe acting nominations!