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The Best Racing Movies & Documentaries To Watch

For kart racers and motorsport fans alike, re-watching a classic movie about F1 or discovering a new documentary about racing can help alleviate the withdrawal symptoms from not racing during the off-season.

Over the past decade, with the support of social media, F1-based films and documentaries have gained traction and become more popular than ever.

Before, F1 was something that you watched from the sidelines, but now, you can follow your favorite driver on Instagram, Facebook, TikTok etc and see inside the facility where they train and get a glimpse of what their lives are like from popular tv series like Drive to Survive.

This opportunity to get closer to our favorite drivers has truly inspired more people than ever in the motorsport community and helped wrangle in more people to peek inside the exciting world of motorsport.

We put together a list of  11 films and 16 documentaries for you to stave off the karting  withdrawal symptoms this weekend!

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Without further ado, let's jump into the top recommended racing films first!

We asked our members and social media followers what their favorite films were, please see below the order of ratings!

RUSH 

P1 - For Best Racing Film Based on a True Story!

RUSH portrays the exhilarating true story of two of the greatest rivals the world has ever witnessed—handsome English playboy James Hunt (Chris Hemsworth) and his methodical, brilliant opponent, Niki Lauda (Daniel Brühl). Set against the sexy and glamorous golden age of Formula 1 racing, Rush follows the two drivers as they push themselves to the breaking point of physical and psychological endurance, where there is no shortcut to victory and no margin for error.

Two-time Academy Award® winner Ron Howard (A Beautiful Mind, Frost/Nixon), teams once again with fellow two-time Academy Award® nominee, writer Peter Morgan (Frost/Nixon, The Queen), on Rush, a spectacular big-screen re-creation of the merciless 1970s rivalry between James Hunt and Niki Lauda.

Also starring Olivia Wilde (TRON: Legacy) and Alexandra Maria Lara (The Reader), Rush is produced by Andrew Eaton (A Mighty Heart), Howard, Academy Award® winner Brian Grazer (Apollo 13, A Beautiful Mind), Eric Fellner (Senna, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy), Morgan and Brian Oliver (Black Swan) and executive produced by Cross Creek Pictures, Exclusive Media, Todd Hallowell and Tim Bevan. Universal Pictures will distribute the film in North America.  

Rush was shot on location in the U.K., Germany and Austria.
http://www.rushmovie.com

Available on AMAZONE PRIME

FORD VS FERRARI

P2 - For Best Racing Film Based on a True Story!

Academy Award-winners Matt Damon and Christian Bale star in FORD v FERRARI, based on the remarkable true story of the visionary American car designer Carroll Shelby (Damon) and the fearless British-born driver Ken Miles (Bale), who together battled corporate interference, the laws of physics, and their own personal demons to build a revolutionary race car for Ford Motor Company and take on the dominating race cars of Enzo Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in France in 1966.

Directed by: James Mangold

Produced by: Peter Chernin, Jenno Topping, James Mangold

Cast: Matt Damon, Christian Bale, Jon Bernthal, Caitriona Balfe, Tracy Letts, Josh Lucas, Noah Jupe, Remo Girone, Ray McKinnon

Available Here https://store.cineplex.com/product/ford-v-ferrari

SENNA

P3 - For Best Racing Film Based on a True Story!

Spanning his decade-long career as a Formula One racer, SENNA explores the life and work of triple world champion Ayrton Senna, his physical and spiritual achievements on the track, his quest for perfection and the mythical status he has since attained. Far more than a film for F1 fans, SENNA unfolds a remarkable story in a remarkable manner, eschewing many standard documentary techniques in favor of a more cinematic approach that makes full use of astounding footage, much of which is drawn from F1 archives and previously unseen. Follow SENNAMovie on Facebook and Twitter for more.


Available on Amazon Prime

GO KARTS

Voted Best Racing Movie for Kids Who Love Karting! 

When his mother moves them to a new town, 15-year-old Jack discovers go kart racing and dedicates himself to the sport. With the support of an old race-car driver with a secret past, and his new best friends, Jack must learn to control his recklessness to win the national title.

Watch Go Karts, Only on Netflix: https://www.netflix.com/title/80241136

Talladega Nights:
The Ballad of Ricky Bobby

Voted Best Racing Comedy! 

The fastest man on four wheels, Ricky Bobby (WILL FERRELL) is one of the greatest drivers in NASCAR history. A big, hairy American winning machine, Ricky has everything a dimwitted daredevil could want, a luxurious mansion, a smokin' hot wife (LESLIE BIBB) and all the fast food he can eat. But Ricky's turbo-charged lifestyle hits an unexpected speed bump when he's bested by flamboyant Euro-idiot Jean Girard (SACHA BARON COHEN, TV's "Da Ali G Show") and reduced to a fear-ridden wreck. Losing his wife and job to best bud and fellow fool, Cal Naughton, Jr. (JOHN C. REILLY), Ricky must kick some serious asphalt if he's to get his career back on the track, beat Girard and reclaim his fame and fortune. 'Cause as Ricky Bobby always says, IF YOU AIN'T FIRST, YOU'RE LAST!

DAYS OF THUNDER

Voted Best Racing Cassic! 

In the fast-paced world of NASCAR, a rivalry brews between rookie hotshot Cole Trickle (Tom Cruise) and veteran racer Rowdy Burns (Michael Rooker). When both of them are seriously injured in competition, the former bitter rivals become close friends. With Cole's spirits restored by a romance with neurosurgeon Dr. Claire Lewicki (Nicole Kidman), and Rowdy still sidelined by injuries, Cole decides to race Rowdy's car in the Daytona 500 against underhanded newcomer Russ Wheeler (Cary Elwes).

While the movie was neither based on a true story, nor a biographical film, the main character Cole Trickle was very loosely based on the careers of Tim Richmond and Geoff Bodine, and several scenes reenacted or referenced real-life stories and personalities from NASCAR history.


Watch on Amazon Prime

DRIVEN

Voted Best of the Worst Racing Classics!

A cutting-edge action drama about an exciting cast of characters living life in the fastest of lanes, in the thrilling and dangerous world of high-tech car racing. Rookie Jimmy Bly (Kip Pardue) could go all the way, but not without the help of fallen legend Joe Tanto (Sylvester Stallone) or without the love of another racer's girl (Estella Warren).

"Driven is a 2001 American action sports film directed by Renny Harlin and starring Sylvester Stallone, who also wrote and produced. It centers on a young racing driver's effort to win the CART FedEx Championship Series auto racing championship. Prior to production, Stallone was seen at many Formula One races, but he was unable to procure enough information about the category due to the secrecy with which teams protect their cars, so he decided to base the film on Champ Car. Driven received generally negative reviews from critics, and was a commercial failure." - Wikipedia

Sometimes, just sometimes, watching a bad movie is like seeing a car crash. You can't turn away and this movie has TONS of crashes to keep you watching!


Watch on the Cineplex Store!

THE ART OF RACING IN THE RAIN 

Voted as the BEST Romantic Comedy Movie!

Legendary car booster Randall Memphis Raines thought he'd left the fast lane behind until he's forced out of retirement in a do-or-die effort to save his kid brother from the wrath of an evil mobster!

BABY DRIVER

Voted as the BEST adrenalized heist thriller-meets-musical comedy!

A talented, young getaway driver (Ansel Elgort) relies on the beat of his personal soundtrack to be the best in the game. When he meets the girl of his dreams (Lily James), Baby sees a chance to ditch his criminal life and make a clean getaway. But after being coerced into working for a crime boss (Kevin Spacey), he must face the music when a doomed heist threatens his life, love and freedom. See it Only In Cinemas. !

GONE IN 60 SECONDS

Voted as the BEST Car Chase Scene!

Legendary car booster Randall Memphis Raines thought he'd left the fast lane behind until he's forced out of retirement in a do-or-die effort to save his kid brother from the wrath of an evil mobster!

WATCH ON AMAZON PRIME!

GRAND PRIX

Voted BEST racing film from the 60's!

Oscar-winning editing and sound propel this action-packed look at the intertwining lives of four competitive Grand Prix race car drivers.

WATCH ON AMAZON PRIME!

Now, let's jump into the best Racing Documentaries!

15 Racing Documentaries to get your racing fix!

SCHUMACHER

NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY

The ultimate documentary of Formula 1 icon Michael Schumacher. SCHUMACHER features rare interviews and previously unreleased archive footage and traces a very sensitive and critical portrait of the seven-time world champion. This is the only film supported by his family.

WATCH ON NETFLIX!

FORMULA 1 - DRIVE TO SURVIVE

NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY

From the producer of Amy and Senna this series goes one step further into the world of Formula 1 as we meet the families, the teams and the drivers behind the visors in this exclusive, all access documentary Formula 1: Drive to Survive.

WATCH ON NETFLIX!

WILLIAMS

 DOCUMENTARY

More than anything, Williams is an intimate look into the heart of the Williams family. A combination of new and archive footage tells the story all the way from Frank Williams founding the team to his daughter Claire taking hold of the reigns today. At the focus is Virginia Williams, wife of Frank and mother of Claire, and the part she played in the family's success. Interviews with Nigel Mansell and Sir Patrick Head, among others, helps to bring the tale of a true family business alive.


Google Play: Available to rent

Le Mans: Racing is Everything

DOCUMENTARY

The 24 Hours of Le Mans is a motor race like no other. Taking place in France each year, it is an endurance test for drivers and cars that literally takes 24 hours to complete. Travelling from Kuala Lumpur to the Côte D’Azur, shot in breathtaking 4K and with unprecedented access to six of the teams competing for glory, Le Mans: Racing is Everything is motorsport as you’ve never seen it before.

McLaren

DOCUMENTARY

The story of Bruce McLaren, the New Zealander who founded the McLaren Motor Racing team. A man who showed the world that a man of humble beginnings could take on the elite of motor racing and win.

CRASH AND BURN

DOCUMENTARY

For a fleeting moment in the early 80s Tommy Byrne was the world's greatest driver. The film investigates into the economics of Formula One through Tommy's rise and spectacular fall.

GRAND PRIX DRIVER

DOCUMENTARY

GRAND PRIX Driver goes inside the secretive world of Formula 1 by offering never-before-granted access to the inner workings of McLaren. After three tough years, McLaren is hopeful that this is the year the team will be back on the podium, and they have promoted rookie driver Stoffel Vandoorne alongside two-time world champion Fernando Alonso to work towards this goal. Narrated by Michael Douglas.

LAUDA - THE UNTOLD STORY

DOCUMENTARY

In 1976 Niki Lauda survived one of the most famous crashes in Formula One history. Using previously unseen footage, Lauda: The Untold Story explains what happened on that fateful, and near fatal day at the Nurburgring, then follows Lauda's courageous journey to recovery culminating in a miraculous comeback in Monza just weeks later.

Fernando

DOCUMENTARY

The team of "Fernando" has the privilege to witness the most extraordinary stage in the career of the driver from Asturias. Along 2019 and the beginning of 2020, Fernando Alonso has the aim of driving in the most legendary races in the world. The first goal is the Triple Crown. There is only one driver that have achieved: Graham Hill in 1972.

LIFE ON THE LIMIT

DOCUMENTARY

Life on the Limit has the ultimate bragging rights when it comes to interviews, with a plethora of racing stars from John Surtees to Lewis Hamilton having their say on the dangers of motorsport past and present. The journey from the early days of racing to modern F1 has been a long one and the fight to improve safety measures has been just as lengthy. Combining rare and archival footage, the documentary emphasises just how difficult it is to balance safety and thrills in a sport that is inherently dangerous.

Shelby American: The Carroll Shelby Story

DOCUMENTARY

Shelby American tells the story of automotive icon Carroll Shelby. He started out from humble beginnings as a chicken farmer in East Texas and went on to become one of the winningest drivers in the history of American motorsports until a tragic heart condition sidelined his racing career. Shelby reinvented himself as a manufacturer, creating the Shelby Cobra. The Cobra dominated American sports car racing from its inception. But Shelby’s goal was always to win internationally and beat Enzo Ferrari, against whom he had a personal vendetta. With his revolutionary Shelby Cobra Daytona Coupe, Shelby went out and won on the international circuit in Europe. Henry Ford II noticed Shelby’s success and hired him to run Ford’s new GT40 prototype program which was desperately trying to beat Ferrari at the biggest race in the world—The 24 Hours of Le Mans. The Ford/Ferrari wars at Le Mans would become the most storied racing battles in automotive history. And Carroll Shelby was always center stage. To this day, Carroll Shelby is the only man in history to win Le Mans as a driver and a manufacturer.

The 24 Hour War

DOCUMENTARY

The Ford vs. Ferrari rivalry started in 1963 when Henry Ford II tried to buy Ferrari to save the Ford Motor Company, which was being crushed by GM and the Corvette on the track and at dealerships. After months of negotiation, Enzo Ferrari said no. Ford vowed to build a racecar that would dethrone Ferrari. The battle would be at the most famous race in the world, The 24 Hours of Le Mans.

UPPITY: The Willy T. Ribbs Story

DOCUMENTARY

One of the most powerful stories in sports history. Willy T. Ribbs was the Jackie Robinson of auto-racing who shattered the color-barrier in an all-white sport. Willy was referred to as "Uppity" behind his back by mechanics and other racers. He overcame death-threats, unwarranted suspensions and engine sabotage to go after his dream. Ultimately, Willy beat the haters and became the first Black driver to win a Trans-Am race, test a Formula One car, and race in the Indy 500.

BAD SPORT - NEED FOR WEED

EPISODE 2 - DOCUMENTARY

Hippie and small time pot dealer Randy Lanier finds his passion for auto racing by taking his weed racket to new heights.

A new Netflix series explores one man’s twin addictions to racing and drug trafficking. And how his double life eventually caught up to him

Unfortunately there wasn't a dedicated trailer available for this specific episode, but we included the Official Trailer of the series to get an idea of what it is about!

WEEKEND OF A CHAMPION

DOCUMENTARY

Filmmaker Roman Polanski spends a weekend with world champion driver Jackie Stewart as he attempts to win the 1971 Monaco Grand Prix, offering an extraordinarily rare glimpse into the life of a gifted athlete at the height of his powers.

A LIFE OF SPEED

NETFLIX DOCUMENTARY

The life of five-time Formula One world champion Juan Manuel Fangio. The first official documentary.

There wasn't a lot of trailers on  YouTube to choose from, check out the trailer on Netflix to get the best idea of what this film is about! 

WATCH ON NETFLIX!

PRESS & MEDIA CONTACT

Kathy Taylor

Marketing Executive

marketing@edkra.club