The 24 Hour War
With Ford v Ferrari having made all sorts of friends a few years back (pity it’s not on Netflix), I reckon it’s time to address some of the historical, err, liberties that the makers of the film took with the story of the Le Mans 24 hour race of 1966, and especially with the parts played by those three legendary sons of Aotearoa; Bruce McLaren, Denny Hulme and Chris Amon.
Although you would barely know it from Ford v Ferrari, Hulme was British driver Ken Miles’ co-driver for the race (he was behind the wheel for at least half of the famous non-victory) and McLaren and Amon were the all-Kiwi co-pilots of the car that officially won the race. All three men raced on the same team as Ken Miles.
Ford vs Ferrari diminishes these mens’ presence and contribution to near nothing, while the truth is very different.
The doco The 24 Hour War, now streaming on Netflix, at least presents a broader view of what was going on in the Ford team in 1966, and acknowledges that the undeniably brilliant Miles had some equally driven and talented co-stars to work with.
* The Detail: The movie Ford V Ferrari cuts corners
* Why movie Ford v Ferrari black-flags three Kiwi racing heroes
* Ford v Ferrari: Christian Bale, Matt Damon shine in fabulous motorsport movie
Shelby American is now streaming on Netflix.
Likewise, this documentary is a decent look at the work, achievements and life of Carol Shelby – very well played by Matt Damon in Ford v Ferrari – and the legacy of engineering brilliance and maverick management that he left behind.
Life in Colour
Also concerning itself with a race between near-equals (that’ll be this week’s worst segue), the unsinkable David Attenborough, may his name be praised, returns to Netflix with this new series, which takes a revolutionary look at the animals and insects that communicate what they need to by displaying on a light spectrum outside of human experience. The cameras capture what these animals would look like to us if we could see the extreme reds and violets at either side of our visible rainbow. The results, as you would expect, are awe-inspiringly beautiful.
Amend: The Fight For America is now streaming on Netflix.
Amend: The Fight For America
And, viewed as a happier companion piece to Ava DuVernay’s award-winning documentary The 13th, this new series, presented by Will Smith, takes a deep dive into the history of America’s 14th Amendment and how it came to be. The 14th defined who “a citizen” was, while also attempting to define what citizenship meant. Whether citizenship automatically conferred a right to vote, was a knottier question that America would struggle to answer for another century.
The 13th and 14th amendments to the US constitution are only a few pieces of parchment, but they contain the seeds of modern America’s war with itself. Everything we see in the USA today tells us that the creation of these two defining documents was a flawed and messy process. Finding out how they came to be is a stunning journey. The 13th and Amend are both hugely recommended.