I had very little expectations for this film thanks in large part to a weak title and a very weak marketing campaign on the film. It goes to show how much a trailer can really do for a film. The trailer really showed nothing of interest except that Chris Hemsworth's character is a bit of a hot shot. I think I speak for everyone else in that if we were to watch Hemsworth be a hot shot we'd rather see him doing so as the God of Thunder. However, there was much more to this film then just that. It was well directed by Ron Howard and had the benefit of two good lead actors. Now I also knew nothing about James Hunt and Niki Lauda and I definitely did not care at all about racing, and I still do not but with that being said this film still was rather entertaining.
The film follows two characters one being the brash, cocky but likable James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and the other being the cold, determined and incredibly unlikable Niki Lauda (Daniel Bruhl). Hunt and Lauda are up and comers in the racing rankings and quickly face off against each other. It is a heated competition up until Hunt takes a risk by running Lauda off the race tracks for the win. Hunt chalks it up to the nature of competition but this first run in with each other sparks up a fierce rivalry between the two that would be become the talk of the racing world for years to come. Hunt begins to rise up the ranks as he continues to win races hoping that eventually he'd hit it big and race in Formula One. On his way he meets his wife, Suzy (Olivia Wilde). Meanwhile, Lauda has the same ambition to be the best but ultimately pays his way into a superior car which gets him up the ranks even faster then Hunt. This also does not make Lauda's teammates at Ferrari like him very much.
Of course, when the 1976 Formula One season begins, it features James Hunt racing in a McLaren car and Niki Lauda racing in a Ferrari. The season starts with Lauda dominating the first two races as Hunt struggles to keep up. Hunt then wins the Spanish Grand Prix, but is disqualified as Lauda brings to attention that Hunt's car is too wide. McLaren suffers a setback as they try to figure out how to make a car as fast, but within the regulations which infuriates Hunt. Making matters worse, Hunt's wife, Suzy has left him for another man in a very public manner. Following the divorce, he returns to the race course while also regaining his competitive spirit as he regained his points from the disqualification helping him get back into the championship competiton. All of this puts Hunt and Lauda in a fiery competition to see who will push the limits in order to be the best.
Rush was an entertaining film in large part due to the directing of Ron Howard but Chris Hemsworth yet again does a terrific job in the role of a cocky young man. Daniel Bruhl and Hemsworth also have plenty of chemistry as very frequently the best scenes are when the two are in opposition of each other. There is so much animosity between the two but a slight amount of respect between the two that is impressive. It goes to show that these two actors really understand their parts as the two were rivals but their hatred for each other was also fueled by their admiration for each other. They both were competitors to the bone who frequently put their life on the line to achieve the ultimate form of success in what they love. A downfall of the film would be the secondary plot points, most notably the love stories. Hunt's plot of marrying super model Suzy Miller came out of nowhere and disappeared just as quickly as she came into the film. Whereas with Lauda's love interest, the two actors lacked chemistry making their scenes together almost unwatchable. The film also suffers from some pacing issues but is saved just enough by a talented director and two very good lead actors.