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‘Lamborghini: The Man Behind the Legend’ Review: It’s Terrible

Street racing, scandalous love affairs, V-12s and Enzo’s scarves: It shouldn’t take much to make a watchable film about sports car development in 1960s Italy, especially when it’s written and directed by Oscar winner Bobby Moresco.

Well, anyone can have an off day. We recently looked Lamborghini: The man behind the legend and caught up with the Smoking Tire podcaster (and Road & Lane editor-in-chief) Matt Farah to compare notes. Spoiler: All notes were bad.

Don’t read any further if you don’t want plot point spoilers because you plan to see the
movie—but also, if you’re planning on seeing the movie, we can just say we warned you.

Elana Scherr: You saw this movie before me. I saw your tweet saying it was 90
minutes you would never get again in your life. And then I watched it anyway.
Matt Farah:
Yeah, I know, it was crap almost immediately.
Hannah Stein
(Matt’s wife shouts from across the room): Ask him what his expectations were for that!
ES:
Good question. What were your expectations, Matt?
MF:
I am a Lamborghini fan. I’m a Lamborghini owner, and this is a movie about cars. Therefore
how am I not going to watch it? And Ferruccio Lamborghini, nobody really ever talks about his character, the way they talk about Enzo Ferrari or Carroll Shelby. So I wondered
which they would make a movie about. I thought, at worst, it would be entertaining
kind of terrible. Instead, it was just a very sad kind of terrible.
ES:
Terribly boring. You think, at least there will be cars to look at. There was
so few cars in this movie i got up to get a drink and i basically missed all the
cars. I came back and they crashed in whatever race they had to
be, the Mille Miglia or something. And that was basically the last time you saw any
cars.
MF:
It was a regional pre-Mille event. That race was where they promptly lost
me, because Enzo Ferrari is there in a 166. And I know that the 166 came out in
1947, early 1948. So that sets our timeline for that race, because Enzo (Gabriel
Byrne as Enzo) is there talking about his brand new car. So this is the year. And
these guys are just back from WWII, and they’re still kids. So already the
years are funky. Then in the race there is a Porsche 356 Speedster, and there is a
Mercedes 190SL roadster. Those cars didn’t come out until 1954. So you have you
cool storyline and all that. But then they make this race take place in a space-time
continuum that cannot exist.
ES:
The entire timeline was screwed up, even down to the point of the age difference
between Enzo and Ferruccio. When you watch this movie, you’ll think, “Oh boy,
Lamborghini was just a kid. Just a kid against Enzo’s big old man.” But they were
actually 18 years apart, so if Enzo is supposed to be, I don’t know, 60, Ferruccio
mustn’t look 30.
MF:
Right! OK, so there’s that nonsense timeline. And then there’s this street racing dream sequence thing that has nothing to do with the plot, never resolves itself, and comes back several times in the movie with two cars from the company’s history that is 20
years after the movie ended.
ES:
Oh my god, so bad. There is no logic in choosing those two. It wasn’t even two
equally famous cars of every brand.
MF:
Exactly. There’s a Countach I’m starting to use. It is an iconic design. But then
you have Enzo in a Mondial coupe. What are we doing here? You can tell some
producers said somewhere, “We should have Ferruccio and Enzo have a street race and pass each other.” But they never had a street race. “Make it a dream sequence or something. But we have to let Ferrari and Lamborghini race each other, even though Lamborghini never built racing cars.”
ES:
“Let’s just use it to show whenever he’s emotionally upset; when he misses his
son’s birth because he is looking at a Lamborghini badge for his new tractor and
then his wife dies.”
MF:
How about when his wife dies and in the very next scene he meets the surrogate woman who’s chasing his best friend, and he just decides she’s his after one conversation?
ES:
Yes, it was romantic. I understand how movies are made. I know that sometimes you have to fudge a timeline or you have to make things happen in a way that they didn’t because otherwise you just can’t fit everything in. I mean, human lives are so complicated. There are too many people. Sometimes you have to turn people into supporting characters, whatever.
MF:
Ford vs. Ferrari is so full of unforgivable sins.
ES:
Every mechanical moment is gibberish: talking about cast-iron valves and using a sledgehammer to put a wheel bell in front of a tractor wheel.
MF:
That scene annoyed Hannah. This was Hannah’s most hated scene.
Hannah
[shouting]: WHY WAS IT SO LONG?
MF:
Imagine making a movie and deciding, “We’re going to donate 30 seconds of screen
time to choke a tractor.”
ES:
My most hated scene was the dinner where Ferruccio draws a really bad sketch of a Miura. I’m super into the idea of ​​the single visionary. I don’t like that storyline. That’s never true. And in this case I think it’s a great injustice because Lamborghini didn’t design the Miura. He didn’t even want to build the Miura. Giampaolo Dallara and Nuccio Bertone designed it, and Ferruccio was won over by the idea of ​​marketing and that it was the first supercar. It’s a lot more interesting than Ferruccio drawing it on a napkin to impress a cute girl.
MF:
This is an excellent point. This is a grave injustice. I think my least favorite scene
was the end of the movie where he pulls out of a garage in a Miura, and you realize you’ve been there for 90 minutes and basically nothing happened. Except he’s crap to his wives and crap to his kid. There was no great controversy or tension that was overcome.
Oh, here’s another scene that really pissed me off: where he tries to call Enzo out on the bad clutches in the car, and Enzo tells him off and then gets in the back of a Rolls-Royce and is driven away like he a hoity is -toity guy. Enzo drove around in a Fiat! They cast Ferruccio as the inferior farmer and Enzo as this high-society dickhead. In reality
life, Enzo wanted to race cars but had and would have a very kind of humble lowkey life
not being driven around in a Rolls-Royce. Ferruccio owned seven Ferraris. One for
every day of the week.
ES:
They just invented them and then made them less interesting than they really were. I
have seen some bad movies that i still liked. For example, the Snake and Mongoose movie about Don Prudhomme and Tom McEwen. It’s not a good movie. It’s also low-budget, but it’s very heartfelt. You can tell that the people who worked on it really wanted to tell a story. There is a through line to the plot and there is some emotion to it. It just felt like a money grab or something. Someone was just like, “Oh, I have access to someone who has a 350 GT. Let’s make a movie about it.”
MF:
There are a lot of terrible movies that I like. I mean, I like Cannonball Run II. Have you ever seen Speed ​​zone? Speed ​​zone is horrible But it’s also funny. It was lazy and imprecise and historically made no sense and wasn’t cast well. Just every element of movie making was on a two. It’s rare when you see a movie where every possible choice is wrong.
ES:
Yes, I’m trying to think if there was any moment in this movie that I found enjoyable.
I mean, at the very end when they opened the garage and there was a Miura, I was
happy with that, because my husband, Tom, and I joked the whole time that we
will not see one. That they’ll just keep mentioning it, but we’ll never see
this because they could not afford to rent one.
MF:
I would like to see what happened to his partner that he got stuck in the
start. where is that guy We thought we would see him in some kind of recap at the end. “Random tractor guy still owns 25 percent of Lamborghini and sits on a yacht on the Amalfi Coast.”
ES:
Maybe he comes with the second wife, who you also never see again.
MF:
It was a disappointment in pretty much every way a movie can be
disappointment. I have no redeeming thoughts.
ES:
So, are you ready for next year and the Ferrari movie or Brad Pitt’s F1 movie?
MF:
They couldn’t possibly be worse.

Did you look Lamborghini: The man behind the legend? Have you looked at you?
read this? We tried to warn you. Leave your own movie thoughts in the comments.

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