Best Movies by Farr
Senna Poster
Released Runtime Category
2011 106 Documentary, Sports Movies, Foreign Language
Director Language
Asif Kapadia Portuguese, French
Ayrton Senna, Alain Prost


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What's it About

This thrilling documentary follows the life of Formula One driver Ayrton Senna: from his childhood in Brazil as a successful go-kart rider, to the heights of international motor racing. Spanning a breathless, eventful decade, from the mid-1980s to his untimely death in 1994, Kapadia uses home video and archival footage to trace Senna's meteoric rise to the top of his sport and reveal the man behind the racer. Senna's rivalry with French champion Alain Prost is explored, as well as his profound Catholic faith and enduring love of his mother country.

Why we love it

“"Senna"” is indeed one incredible ride, albeit one that ends tragically. Using new audio interviews with many of the main characters in his life (Senna'’s sister, reporters, doctors, F-1 pros), we get a multi-faceted portrayal of a young man whose professional life contrasted strongly with his personal one. Shy and humble away from racing, Senna was an arrogant, totally ruthless driver, often cited by his rivals for recklessness. His unfolding rivalry with Prost, the more seasoned champion, is fascinating to watch. Wisely, Kapadia never resorts to a typical “talking heads” documentary style, letting the images do the talking. Senna'’s POV camera mounted in his car provides a jarring sense of the sport’'s inherent danger. You may know the outcome of Senna’'s final race, but you'’ll watch breathlessly anyway.

BEST MOVIES BY FARR is your personal guide to great movies to rent, stream, or buy; to watch at home or on-the-go. Led by film advocate John Farr, the Best Movies by Farr team works as a "quality filter" for the discerning moviegoer. Every day, we bring you the best of the best, the fantastic familiar films and hidden gems, to answer that age-old question: "What should we watch tonight?"