Gran Turismo is a 2023 American biographical sports drama film directed by Neill Blomkamp from a screenplay by Jason Hall and Zach Baylin. The film is based on the racing simulation video game series of the same name. It tells the true story of Jann Mardenborough, a teenage Gran Turismo player who became a professional racing car driver. The film stars Archie Madekwe as Mardenborough alongside David Harbour, Orlando Bloom, Darren Barnet, Geri Halliwell Horner, and Djimon Hounsou. (Wikipedia)
Gran Turismo follows the rules of effective story-telling to a ’t’. The main character, Mardenborough (Madekwe) is a gamer who has dreamed of becoming a racing driver from a very young age. This desire runs through the duration of the film and is the dramatic need that drives the narrative and the audience is keenly aware of this. Of course, the average viewer would consider this to be a pipe dream. But thanks to marketing executive Danny Moore (Bloom), Nismo, the motorsport division of Nissan establishes the GT Academy to recruit skilled players of the racing simulator Gran Turismo and turn them into real racing drivers.
Suddenly, Mardenborough’s world is turned upside down and he has the chance of a lifetime to make his racing dreams come true. His chief ally would be former driver-turned-mechanic Jack Salter (Harbour), who is hired by Moore to train the players to become real drivers. Salter becomes the first hurdle that Mardenborough must overcome in his quest. However, when he brings Salter (and Moore) over to his side, the trio embark on a shared journey to prove that a sim driver can be a competitive racing driver.
Helmed by Neill Blomkamp, Gran Turismo is a taut, heartfelt, coming-of-age story set against the backdrop of the exciting and dangerous world of racecar driving. The film is visually flashy as befits a video game adaptation but is underpinned by the realism of a true story to provide top engagement throughout. Highly recommended!
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