Starring: Christian von Koenigsegg, Zachary Levi, Chris Harris
Director: J.F. Musial, Josh Vietze
Running Time: 85 mins
Apex: The Story Of The Hypercar is an American documentary about the rise of the highest classification of road car: the hypercar, and the few manufacturers who are pushing the limits of technology in pursuit of the greatest motoring machine of all time.
Some people often find the admiration of cars as objects of beauty and technological prowess a strange ideology, but as a bit of a car buff myself, I understand just how exciting the best motors of all can be. That’s what Apex: The Story Of The Hypercar is all about: admiring the most advanced and most beautiful works in motoring, explained through interviews with journalists, manufacturers and car enthusiasts alike.
With that said, the film’s enthusiasm and passion for cars is presented in such a way that not only feels a little unnatural, but actually rather sycophantic. That’s not to say the opinions and passions of the interviewees and directors is in any way unjustified, but the almost religious way in which the film presents its subject matter is really quite excessive, taking a passion for cars to an extent with which it’s really difficult to engage.
Now, enthusiasm and passion for a subject always works to the benefit of any film – particularly a documentary – and the positive effects of that can be seen clearly in this film’s most fascinating moments.
Above all, the detail with which the film focuses on the production of the most impressive cars in the world is absolutely riveting to watch, while its focus on humanity’s relentless pursuit for ultimate speed and technological prowess makes for a fascinating key theme throughout.
However, as factually interesting as that focus can be – particularly on the production and release process of Koenigsegg’s then-new One:1 hypercar – the film has an irritatingly abstract tone to it throughout, with far, far too much on the emotional and almost spiritual effect that cars of the highest class have on people.
Again, that’s not to say that one can’t be moved by a beautiful, advanced car, but the film spends an hour and a half listening to interviewees saying the exact same thing about how truly astonishing these cars can be, directed in a style that furthers that spiritual vibe to an incredibly annoying extent.
With an angelic musical score and soft, slow editing throughout, the directors seem to be making this motoring documentary out to be some sort of religious propaganda, which comes across not only as pretentious, but also far from a genuine, engaging portrayal of the subject at hand.
Like I said earlier, there’s nothing wrong with having passion for a subject matter – and it’s almost always something that’s good for a film. However, Apex: The Story Of The Hypercar takes passion to an excessive degree, and despite featuring some interesting core material and themes, the film turns into an irritatingly sycophantic discussion of the spiritual beauty of the motor car.
It is something that many people feel, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but having the same idea hammered down your throat for an hour and a half in such pretentious fashion is what really undoes this film, and that’s why I’m giving it a 6.8 overall.