I was going to write about just one of these films, but then I figured why not turn it into a list? There have been some absolutely brilliant motorsport films in the last few years. Here, in no particular order, are my Top 5 Car Movies.
Note: All these films are documentaries. As is pointed out in comments, there are many fiction/action movies featuring cars. I haven’t considered them for this list. Maybe that’s for another time 🙂
Truth in 24 II – Every Second Counts
This is at the top of the list as it’s the movie I just finished watching. If you’ve seen Truth in 24 then you’ll know the drill for this one. It’s basically an 83 minute ad for Audi’s TDI endurance racing team and their campaign at LeMans.
Don’t let the fact that you know the drill put you off watching it. It’s compelling viewing. The quality of the Audi racing team is apparent for all to see and it’s little wonder they’ve won 10 LeMans races in 12 years.
BONUS: iTunes users can get access to Truth in 24 II, in high definition, for free. I just watched it tonight via my little Apple TV box. Free access is available in U.S., United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.
Truth in 24
Whilst the sequel is good, I’d really recommend you watch the original first. It’s a great insight into the dedication and teamwork required to run a LeMans team. The Audi crew’s commitment and professionalism is remarkable and the risks these guys take to drive in this race are breathtaking.
Here’s a 60 second trailer, but the full Truth in 24 film is available on Youtube.
TT: Closer to the Edge
If you think guys who race at LeMans are risk takers, you need to see TT: Closer to the Edge.
OK, this doesn’t strictly fit within the title of “Car Movies”. This movie is all about motorcycle racing, the Isle of Man Tourist Trophy (TT) and the ….. unique personalities that put their lives on the line to win the ultimate bike race. The action is intense. The people are funny, inspiring and scary all at the same time and the movie is wonderfully made. You can’t help but cheer for men like Guy Martin.
Highly recommended. Tip: I don’t know if a 3D version is available on DVD, but it was at the cinema and it was a great way to see this film.
There might be five motorsports fans who haven’t seen Senna yet and if you’re one of them, then repent, watch it, then go forth and sin no more.
More than any of the other movies on this list, Senna draws out the extreme talent that’s needed to succeed at the top level of motorsport. It’s a fascinating insight into Ayrton Senna’s life and career, using a lot of old film presumably from family movies, combined with interviews and racing footage. It’s also a bird’s-eye view at the power plays and politics in Formula 1, which I assume are only more prevalent today.
There are two versions out there – a 3-hour version and a 100 minute version. See the long one. You’ll be glad you did.
Love The Beast
Love the Beast was made by Australian actor, Eric Bana (The Hulk, Blackhawk Down, Munich, Chopper). It’s the story of his love affair with a car that he’s owned since he was 15 years old. The film follows his campaign in a race called Targa Tasmania, a 5-day tarmac rally on public roads right here in my back yard.
There’s some stunning driving footage in this film and it’s a wonderful showcase for this premier motorsports event. The film is more about Bana and his friends, and the way the car has bound them together, acting as a campfire for them to gather around over the years.
This film features appearances by Jeremy Clarkson, Jay Leno and Dr Phil McGraw. All three contribute to the discussion about car culture and try to give their insight into why cars are such powerful magnets for some men. Dr Phil is particularly impressive.
Watch it with your wife.
Got any recommendations of your own?
Comments are open!