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Ford v Ferrari. It’s not worth the drive | Movie Review

When Henry Ford II, president of the automobile empire, Ford Motor Company, is slighted in a business deal and personally insulted by a fellow car manufacturer, Enzo Ferrari, Ford decides to take on the Italian automaker in the venue that Ferrari’s vehicles donated for years, the Le Mans car race, formally known as, 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Academy Award-winners Matt Damon plays the auto designer and Christian Bale star as the driver of a state-of-the-art car that Ford pours millions into, to combat his Italian rival. Ford v Ferrari, is a long, drawn-out (over two and half hours!) story about how far a powerful man went to achieve victories over his opponent. This is a film you should wait and rent.

It’s loaded with what I call false conflicts. Screenwriters’ tool of creating quandaries that there’s really no question as to how they will be resolved. For example, there’s a plotline raising doubt over whether Matt Damon’s character will be hired by Ford to draw up and build the car. Also, the Ford executives don’t like Bale’s character and want someone else to drive at Le Mans. But because Damon and Bale are the stars, it’s obvious how all of this turns out.

Some commentators opined that even if you aren’t into this sport, you’ll be intrigued. Wrong. If you don’t like the sport of car racing, this film will bore you. Especially at the insufferable length of two hours and 32 minutes.

Set in the 1960s, this story will appeal to those who long for that time when white men exclusively held the reins of power. Before notions of equality and diversity took hold. The acting is superior. Damon and Bale shine, as does Tracy Letts as the legendary auto executive Henry Ford II, and Caitriona Balfe who plays Bale’s loving and supportive spouse.

Ford v Ferrari gets a “D” for cast diversity. Other than a few scenes of blacks working in the Ford factory – Ford has a long history of hiring African Americans as early as 1916 – there are few people of color in this film. Understandably, there would not have been black people in executive offices or socializing with the powerbrokers featured in this movie. But blacks made up about a third of the Motor City’s population during that time, including some of my family members. So, they should have been on the streets and other background scenes of the film.

Ultimately, Ford v Ferrari has some historical value and moments of intrigue. But for non-race car fans, this film is too long in length and too short in entertainment.

Ford v Ferrari is rated PG-13 (for language and peril). And it’s a Rent It.

Matt Damon Gives His Lesson on Diversity and Inclusion to Black Woman Filmmaker

On HBO's Project Greenlight, Matt Damon tells Black woman Filmmaker diversity and inclusion is only in front of the camera

Did actor/director/producer Matt Damon just step in it or what!

The producers of HBO's Project Greenlight released a clip featuring Matt Damon interrupting a Black filmmaker to school her on diversity.

On Sunday's episode of Project Greenlight -- the show where Damon and Ben Affleck help promising directors get their first break in the film business by getting attached to a project-- the exercise was to choose a director for a comedy in which the only black character happens to be a prostitute. Damon, Ben Affleck, the Farrelly Brothers and Effie Brown, a black filmmaker, who has 17 feature films to her credit including Dear White People, had to make the decision as to who gets to direct the comedy.

Brown thought it was important to have diversity among the filmmakers so the character could be accurately and sensitively portrayed. The finalists consisted of several white guys, an Asian man, and a white woman.

"I would want to urge people to think about—whoever this director is, how they're going to treat the character of Harmony," Brown stated, "the only black character who's a hooker who gets hit by her white pimp."

Damon interrupted her and pooh-poohed, saying diversity should only go so far.

"When we're talking about diversity, you do it in the casting of the film, not in the casting of the show," he said, referring to why he felt Brown's choice of diverse directors wasn't important.

"Hoo. Wow. OK!" Brown responded.

Going by this exchange, it appears that Damon thinks diversity and inclusion are good things to see on the big screen, but it's not really necessary in decision-making roles.

Of course, the Twittersphere is exploding and this one clip just might "break the Internet".

It's only a clip, but what are your thoughts? Is Matt Damon for real, or is this a publicity stunt to get more people to watch Project Greenlight?

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