As We Go Green: The Review
My review of the new Formula E movie, As We Go Green
ince I heard about this project last year, I was instantly excited by it. Being a fan of Formula E since the very beginning, I knew something like this would appeal to people like me. However, what this movie does so well is that it appeals to those who might know what the sport is, or even those who may be ignorant to it in the past. As We Go Green has a main mission statement; to show that the future may not be as scary as it seems after all.
Directed by Academy award winner Fisher Stevens and Malcolm Venville, and produced by Hollywood icon Leonardo DiCaprio, this is an electrifying blast across the world's most famous cities with a relatively new racing series that's only getting better and better. The title plays on commentator Jack Nicholls' now famous catchphrase, but also states the importance of this series and what it really is trying to accomplish behind the scenes.
The story itself centres around the series' fourth season and focuses one five of the leading drivers as they all charge (no pun, intended.) towards championship glory. Other side-stories include the involvement of stars such as DiCaprio and series founder Alejandro Agag's efforts to develop a battery capable of running a full race distance with help from none other than McLaren, in time for season five of the series and the more powerful Generation 2 car.
What struck me though was the involvement of the drivers and the rather shocking stories they have kept publicly hidden for so long. These five leading drivers, shadowed and outcast by their life dreams of F1, only to realise that maybe such dreams was not the thing they were destined for, leaving absolutely no stone turned in the process. Without giving much away, one particular story from Techeetah's Jean-Eric Vergne left me particularly emotional.
Vergne speaks about 2014, his final year in F1 with Toro Rosso, and those particular stories of what he went through was very upsetting. It was a whole lot more than somebody just losing their drive, and how the mental implications of it can play on the mind so hard, that sometimes it almost ruin you completely. However, the best thing you realise through this feature is that these world class drivers, who were each initially led to believe by their F1 superiors that they would never be good enough for success, find just that in a sport that is finding confidence at every bend.
The cinematography is absolutely on point, and the documentary provides some incredible footage and some moments that allows you to really get engaged in the story. In particular, the opening few moments of the documentary is so beautifully shot and edited that you would mistake for a proper movie. The movie itself takes the style of a fly-on-the-wall documentary, which always seems to be in the right place at the right time.
The only thing I have against this otherwise amazing feature length movie is the way that it was released, who ever is in hold of the distribution rights doesn't really seem to be sharing it out there. It is an incredible piece of work and could really draw new people to the series like the way Netflix's Drive to Survive series did to F1, and with the premiere only coming out in the UK Monday night (At midnight, no less) it would be a bit better to see this appear up on the major streaming sites, or even as a PPV on YouTube. I'm sure there is a viable reason behind it, but I would like to see more of it.
Being a major Formula E fan, I tried to go into this with a clear head and with no bias whatsoever and I really enjoyed it. There are definitely some surprises here, some moments from season four that I had forgotten and some I never seen before. If you are a Formula E fan, you will adore this. If you are a racing fan that is sceptical of the series or someone who hasn't even heard of it before, you'll love it.
As We Go Green is a proper motor racing and general sport documentary that really grips when it wants to. Something for racing fans to definite approach with a clear head, but you'll come to realise the series isn't as comical as you may think and that in fact, the scary reality of an all-electric future can be also something extremely competitive and exciting.