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Release Date: 08/25/23 [Cinemas]
Genre: Action. Adventure. Drama. 

Studio: Sony Pictures Entertainment. 

"Based on the unbelievable, inspiring true story of a team of underdogs - a struggling, working-class gamer, a failed former race car driver, and an idealistic motorsport exec - who risk it all to take on the most elite sport in the world." 


Gran Turismo is a rare exception to the rule that movies based on video games can’t work. Namely because it’s not about just the game itself but about the incredible true story of a gamer taken from behind the screen and placed behind the wheel of a race car. Taking influences and nods from the games nostalgia and elements, the film splits the difference and allows the racing to take on the Gran Turismo mechanisms purists will love. 


David Harbour stuns in a role that provokes the audience to see him as more than just the character from that Netflix show. He’s a perfect coach, one that is built upon good morals and good intentions. As the team’s progress becomes more promising, we get to witness the disbelief and satisfaction take over Harbour’s being as he becomes the ultimate hype-man for our racer. Archie Madekwe is flawless casting to represent not only the real person that came before but the everyman that wishes to pursue their dreams but fails to accelerate toward them. Madekwe makes a name for himself here and truly takes over the persona of gamer turned racer, Jann Mardenborough. His romance that attempts to blossom throughout may be part of the true story, but it feels a bit underdeveloped for its participation in the final product. It's still cute but it doesn’t have much purpose beyond showing our racer having a personal life outside the race. 


It’s great to see Orlando Bloom return to the big screen and while he’s not the most significant role in the film, he still delivers where he needs to and unlike Harbour’s coach comes off as a rich man in for himself. The true villain however, Nicholas Capa (Josha Stradowski) is a malicious competitor that is built upon greed and wealth, unlike Jann, leading to some nail biting race moments and some aggressive speech off the track.   


Gran Turismo is the biggest surprise of the year and a near perfect film. Neil Blomkamp has been at a lull as of late, never retaking the throne he created for himself after the release of District 9. Here, he is back in his element and creates a wonderful racing film both visually and built around the emotions of our characters. The stunt work, the racing scenes and the crashes above all else are thrilling, brutal and truly taking the pedal to the metal. This is about as close to entering the campaign of a video game we will ever get and Blomkamp nails it on the head. Beautifully shot, adrenaline pumping and breaking the rules set by video game adaptations that have come before. 

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