- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 20, 2020

The multiple Academy Award-winning film about a testy racing rivalry between two legendary car companies roars onto ultra-high definition in Ford v Ferrari: Ultimate Collector’s Edition (20th Century Fox Home Entertainment, Rated PG-13, 2.39:1 aspect ratio, 152 minutes, $42.99).

Director James Mangold’s 1960s sports drama loads up on fast cars, high-speed action, a heavy dose of machismo and real-life legends of the automobile industry and professional racing world.

The story heats up after Enzio Ferrari (Remo Girone) rejects a deal by Henry Ford II (Tracy Letts) to acquire his company. In retaliation, Ford demands his company execs build a race car and enlists Carroll Shelby (Matt Damon) to manage the Ford GT40 team with the goal of humiliating Enzo Ferrari’s Scuderia Ferrari team in the 24 Hours of Le Mans car endurance race.

With help, and a simmering friendship, with driver and obstinate rebel Ken Miles (Christian Bale), Shelby navigates through corporate stupidly and imbecile suits such as Ford VP Leo Beebe (Josh Lucas) to ultimately bring home the checkered flag.

Gearheads as well as movie fans in love with underdogs will love Mr. Mangold’s adaptation of a thrilling time in automobile racing history.

4K in action: With such detail and intense colorful clarity, I find it hard to believe that the visual presentation was only a 4K upscale from a 2K intermediate.

The lifelike injection of racing antics starts with Miles driving a pristine prototype of the GT40 with detail down to every rivet and a later model with glowing red brakes linings leading to a total failure and the car bursting in flames.

Facial features are as illuminating with the various shades of red on Ford’s face as he drives shotgun next to Shelby and veins popping out under the eyes of Miles as he concentrates on his mission. 

Even scenes of the Le Mans’ race during a nighttime rainstorm are impeccably clear with enough detail to practically count the beads of rain on a fast-moving windshield zooming by the screen.

The Dolby Atmos soundtrack also adds enormous sonic punch as viewers will aurally feel every gear shift, tire squeal, motor hum and metal twisting crash.

Best extras: A 60-minute production documentary broken up into eight segments covers the love for the director, a look at the real Ken Miles and Carroll Shelby, recreating the 1960s locations and the co-star vintage cars (including seven corvettes from 1956 to 1963), comparing the Ferrari to the GT40 and using the latest technology to shoot cars racing at high speeds.

All are supplemented by interviews with cast, crew, technical advisors and even the original pitstop mechanics.

Also, teeth-gritting owners will need to use the included code to access more streaming extras (found on the iTunes and Movies Anywhere versions) such as a relaxed and informative 15-minute conversation between Mr. Bale and Mr. Damon as well as a 22-minute breakdown of recreating the Le Mans race and track.

These extras could have and should have been easily added to the 4K or Blu-ray disc.

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