Ferrari (2023) – ripper car movies

Our deadly passion. Our terrible joy


Documenting a three-month slice of time in the lead-up to and aftermath of the 1957 Mille Miglia race in Italy, Michael Mann’s Ferrari delves into both the professional and personal lives of Enzo Ferrari (Adam Driver).

First published in the March 2024 issue of Street Machine

Despite grappling with business and relationship pressures, Enzo is intent on firmly re-establishing Ferrari’s dominance as a race car manufacturer. But with funds starting to dwindle and a media frenzy around his character and personal choices beginning to overshadow the brand, he becomes embroiled in further controversy following the death of driver Eugenio Castellotti (Marino Franchitti) during a training accident at the company’s Modena track. Still reeling from the death of his son, Dino, only months earlier, Ferrari is publicly chastised following his apparent inhumane response to Castellotti’s passing.

Ferrari’s push for success sees the inclusion of young-gun driver Alfonso de Portago (Gabriel Leone), who joins the team alongside fellow drivers Piero Taruffi (Patrick Dempsey) and Peter Collins (Jack O’Connell) in the lead-up to the Mille Miglia, with a win against the Maserati stable firmly in their sights.

Running parallel to Enzo’s team and vehicle preparation are careful negotiations with his wife, Laura (played brilliantly by Penelope Cruz), whose financial stake in the company is necessary to its future viability, with rumours of a Fiat or even Ford takeover circulating through the industry. This delicate relationship is further complicated by Ferrari’s live-in relationship with mistress Lina Lardi (Shailene Woodley), mother to his son Piero (Giuseppe Festinese).

Ferrari’s stresses are exacerbated tenfold at the ’57 Mille Miglia in the village of Cavriana, where de Portago and his co-driver Edmund Nelson (Erik Haugen) are killed in a horrific crash that also claims the lives of nine spectators, including five children. In real life, Ferrari was charged with manslaughter as a result of the crash, but was later cleared following an inquest. However, the Mille Miglia race was never run again.

VERDICT: 3.5/5

Being a Michael Mann fan, I had great expectations for Ferrari, but I left the cinema feeling a little underwhelmed due to the film’s slow pace and the surprisingly lacklustre special effects. Still, I was ultimately intrigued by this snapshot of Enzo Ferrari’s story in the lead-up to the tragic crash at Cavriana that claimed so many lives.

Adam Driver displays his versatility in his portrayal of Enzo, but it is Penelope Cruz who steals the show as the jaded Laura in a shatteringly good, award-worthy performance. As long as you keep your expectations somewhat in check, Ferrari is definitely worth a watch.


  • 1957 Ferrari 801
  • 1957 Ferrari 335 S
  • 1956 Ferrari 500 TRC
  • 1957 Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa
  • 1955 Ferrari 857 S
  • 1956 Ferrari 250 GT Tour de France
  • 1956 Peugeot 403
  • 1956 Maserati 350S
  • 1954 Maserati 250F
  • 1954 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL
  • 1952 Lancia Aurelia GT
  • 1955 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint


  • Adam Driver
  • Penelope Cruz
  • Shailene Woodley
  • Patrick Dempsey
  • Gabriel Leone
  • Jack O’Connell
  • Sarah Gadon
  • Giuseppe Festinese
  • Marino Franchitti
  • Erik Haugen


Michael Mann


Classic racing action, including a re-enactment of the 1957 Mille Miglia race.


A dramatised account of the events leading up to and following the Ferrari team’s fatal crash at the 1957 Mille Miglia


Blu-ray, DVD, streaming.


Enzo Ferrari was a fan of French cars designed by the famous Italian Pininfarina studios, and used Peugeots as his daily drivers for many years.