Le Mans '66: The great challenge - Review of the new film by James Mangold

A roar, that of the engines starting up, the screech of new tires already hot on the incandescent asphalt and then the traction force that pushes you from behind as if to throw yourself against a wall of wind, intangible but as real as the fear of the first corner . And then, you feel it. The adrenaline, which flows inside you like petrol in a V8, the heart pumps as much as the cylinders of the engine, and here you are free, for an instant, free from everything and everyone, perhaps even from yourself, and discover something different , again, in a sense. The free version of yourself.

This is what it feels like behind the wheel of a XNUMX+ horsepower racing car, this is what it is Le Mans' 66 - The big challenge is able to make you live, while sitting comfortably in a cinema. After Logan, chard he is struggling with the camera, the cars, and a story that few really know but that he was able to tell perfectly, we could say almost maniacal.

Win and lose

Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) is a sports car builder as well as a professional racing driver who wins the 24 hours of Le Mans, a monumental challenge, but he has several heart problems that force him to retire from racing. Ken miles (Christian Bale) is a loser in life: he works as a mechanic in his own workshop, barely pays the bills and although he can count on his wife and son who adore him, he will never be a champion in life as he is on the track ... mechanic "has the handle", as they say in the jargon, that is, he can drive damn well.

Carroll e Ken they have known each other for a lifetime and it is the mythical Shelby to drag Miles in the impossible enterprise: build and drive a racing Ford capable of beating Ferrari at Le Mans. Let this excerpt of the plot suffice, considering that two hours and thirty minutes of film await you and that, most likely, you would have liked to have been many more. Yes, because when you have a film like this in front of you there are two options: either you are a crazy person for the engines (like the writer) or you are not but you risk madly to become one. Matt Damon is great in his role and perhaps it returned an image of Carroll Shelby stronger than what it really is, while Christian Bale has probably outdone himself once again, to the point that in certain scenes it seems to be able to read his mind and steal his every thought, while saying nothing.

The cast of excellence does not stop there: Jon Bernthal abandons the anti-hero guns and weapons of the Punisher to dress those of Lee Iacocca, a man who was able to revolutionize the communication of the world automotive world, while Tracy Letts is Henry Ford II, upright and stoic but also deeply practical and human, as well as the brand that bears his name. Our Remo Girone represents a national pride in all senses: in the role of Enzo Ferrari, the good Girone puts all of himself, interpreting the master of dream cars par excellence in a perfect way.

Start the engines

Le Mans '66 - The big challenge is about car racing and not about car racing: many could tell you that it is a story about life and how a few brave guys have changed the way of conceiving the car. The film has an absurd photography and visual rendering - not counting the special effects - and almost all the cars in question have been faithfully reproduced, just think that it is the Ford GT40 that the Ferrari 330 P3 Competizione are worth over thirty million dollars each, it is unthinkable that real models are used since in the film between accidents and broken pieces, cars are massacred properly. Enjoying such a film today is really enjoyable, as well as perfect in its duration that although it is unusual for modern films (there are few in films that exceed an hour and a half to date), the fluency and skill of the actors involved will keep you in such suspense that you will never have enough ... just as you would never get enough of speed if you were behind the wheel of a racing car.

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