“Schumacher” introduces newcomers to a F1 racing legend

By: Leonardo Cervantes

Netflix’s “Schumacher,” closely covers race driver Michael Schuacher’s friends, family, rivals, tragedies, accomplishments and childhood. The German Formula 1 sports documentary about Schumacher was co-directed by Hanns-Bruno Kammertöns, Vanessa Nöcker and Michael Wech. 

Over the past year, Formula 1 racing has seen a huge increase in popularity so what better way to introduce one of the most successful F1 drivers to newcomers and hardcore fans than a documentary. 

Schumacher has always been a dedicated man. From day one he set out to try and be the best and anything, other than number one was considered a failure to him. 

Spa Belgium in 1991 was the site of Schumacher’s first Formula 1 Grand Prix race. From the first time the announcers and competitors laid eyes on Schumacher, they knew he had a promising career ahead of him.

At the time, Ayrton Senna, was the world champion and considered the king of Formula 1 racing. Nigel Mansell and Alain Prost, were also amongst the biggest names in the sport. They were all considered Formula one superstars and all of them were over the age of 27. 

Although they all saw the potential Schumacher had they had some skepticism because of how young he was. The veteran drivers all thought it was too early for him to test his skills against some of the bigger names in the sport. 

In his first Formula 1 race, Schumacher qualified at 7 place and that was when the buzz really began growing. Following his first race, the fourth-best team in the world immediately contacted Schumacher to make him an offer and thus the legend of Schumacher began.

The following year Schumacher at 23 years old became one of the youngest Grand Prix winners in a long time. Success quickly followed and he became a star among the fans.

The documentary does a great job of showcasing Schumacher’s early years. A photograph of 4-year-old Schumacher shows how his father always worked with mountain bicycles and go-karts. So it came as no surprise that Schumacher would go on to race in life. As the years go on, Schumacher is competing with other teens on go-kart tracks and showcasing his skills.

The footage of a racing, teenage Schumacher was awesome to watch because you can tell the skill difference between him and the other kids, he was truly a prodigy.

While the documentary was well produced, it left a lot to be desired because of the lack of current Schumacher footage. Actually, it was only older footage and the audience does not get to see what he currently looks like. However, he does narrate throughout the documentary. I feel it takes away a bit of how special the film could have been. 

Being able to see him at a young age was awesome but the missing ingredient was his current life. This documentary is not just for fans because it focuses on his whole life and what led to his success, and it includes all his failures and setbacks and one doesn’t need to be a Formula racing fan to appreciate that. 

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