Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

There can be only '1' - Formula One continues to hit the big screen

Published by Bassano

Life on the limit cover art

When I first heard of the F1 documentary '1', I must admit I thought it was clinging onto the coat tails of the much publicised Ron Howard pic, Rush. I'm happy to admit, I was wrong.

It wasn't on my ever growing 'to watch' list but being F1, my interest was piqued. Whilst I was probably never going to rush to see it in the cinema, I was lucky enough to catch it on a recent flight - boy was I surprised!

One of a kind

'1' is a documentary which proclaims to tell the story of a golden era of drivers. It could be seen as a highlights package of F1 history but I don't think that should be taken as a bad thing. Sure, it may not be treading new ground but it's a fairly representative of a large chunk of history that for me, captured the essence of each time period without glorifying or denigrating it. It stirred emotions, was evocative in the use of sound and the change that F1 experienced in the wake of the rise in technology and aerodynamic awareness.

Above all else, it stirred me. I wasn't unfamiliar with the tales being told here but I felt that Michael Fassbender's narration grabbed the viewer's attention yet remained as unobtrusive as possible without removing any character from the storytelling. Watching Sid Watkins talk of Senna's last weekend and the horrors that were experienced in that weekend in May, brought tears to my eyes.

Something that Rush never did.

If you like your race cars stylised and moodily shot then this may not be for you. If you want a sense of the danger, tragic loss of life, bravado and talent that F1 has given us over the last 60 or so years, you could do a lot worse that invest 112 mins in the only '1' that matters, this year.