Starring: Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost, Ron Dennis
Director: Asif Kapadia
Running Time: 106 mins
Senna is a British documentary that follows the career of legendary Formula One driver, Ayrton Senna, from his great rivalry with fellow driver Alain Prost, to his Christian lifestyle of the track, for which he was idolised by both the Brazilian people, and the world.
To commemorate 20 years since his death, this film is the best tribute possible to the legend that is Ayrton Senna. As well as giving you an exciting look at his Formula One career, it takes on a hugely emotional atmosphere as you bond with this incredibly generous and likeable man, and this all builds up into a hard-hitting and saddening finale.
As a huge F1 fan, I loved all of the attention to detail in terms of the track action, including fantastic archive footage, onboard cameras that you’ve never seen before, and a perfect homage to the cars of the late 1980s-early 1990s, which was just beautiful to watch.
All the racing is surely the most thrilling thing about this film, however the attention that this film pays to the legendary rivalry between Senna and Alain Prost is fantastic, as as well as showing how massive the conflict was, it escalates the story into a full-blown war, akin to that you’d get in a Hollywood blockbuster, which is just amazing to watch.
But don’t think that this film is all about Formula One and racing. Although that plays a huge role in the film, the main core of the story is the look at Senna as a person. It shows his generosity as a charitable man to his native Brazil, his faith in God in getting him to where he is, his impact on the Brazilian people and society at the time, and how he influenced the world of motor racing forever.
The film touches beautifully upon the importance of family and home in Senna’s life and career, and it shows you what an incredible human being he was, as well as a stunning racing driver, and that allows you to create an unbreakable bond with him throughout the film.
And because of that bond, the end to this film is more upsetting and more tragic than ever. As well as respecting Roland Ratzenberger, who died a day before Senna, the film creates a very dark and tragic atmosphere over the San Marino GP weekend, as it was in real life.
This makes the following of Senna’s car around the Imola circuit all the more heart-pounding, excruciating and frightening than ever, before you see the horrific crash that ended his life, which hit me so hard that I was crying.
The film finishes by showing Senna’s dedication to both racing and his home country, in a beautiful climax to a thrilling and touching documentary, and that’s why it gets a full 10.0 from me.