In 1966, Ford Motor Company made history by winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans race in a feat which was at most, a masterclass in marketing and at its worst, a lesson in plain old peacocking.
But behind all that showboating and bravado there's a human story full of heart, and it's that story told in Ford v Ferrari.
The film stars Hollywood heavyweights Christian Bale as driver Ken Miles and Matt Damon as driver and car designer Carroll Shelby, as the pair work to help Ford enter the world of motorsports to take on Ferrari.
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At the same time, we get a peek behind the scenes at the up-and-coming "titans of industry" who made it happen and the sheer level of ego that prompted Henry Ford II to step out of his comfort zone.
Tracy Letts, who plays Ford in the film, sums things up perfectly, saying: "The kernel of the story is that Ford got his feelings hurt by Ferrari and, because of his insecurity, he decided to exact revenge in a large-scale way. All the events [of the film] happened as a result of that."
However, he adds, "A lot of great things happened as a result of that too, a lot of innovation and collaboration and friendship and ultimately trying."
And that's the real story; one about how Shelby pulled Miles out of his shell and pushed him into the limelight and how Miles risked his life for the sake of "the perfect lap", and his beliefs for his friend.
It was these characters, their drive and their relationship which drew Bale to the project. "These eccentric, passionate, slightly insane men with a common purpose are so attractive to play," he says.
"And [they're ] enviable in their friendship as well; you watch this film and go, 'Oh man, I want that kind of friendship as well,' you know? It is wonderful when you get to have friendships where you can fight with people but you still know that afterward you're friends, you're thick as thieves, you know you've still got this love for each other regardless.
In the film, Miles is asked to give up his hard-earned win in the interests of being a team player and furthering Ford's cause, a sacrifice which Bale says sees Miles "struggling with his purest idea of racing versus the total compromise, joke, and disgust of... being a team player in [the way that was asked of him]. But he does it for his friend. He does it because he knows how much Shelby put on the line for him."
The film also hinges on the relationship between Miles and his wife, Mollie (Outlander's Caitriona Balfe), who provides the audience with a window into the all-consuming nature of motor racing.
Mollie, Balfe says, helps depict the "price that families have to pay when someone in the family does something extraordinary like this".
"You need somebody who supports you being the fullest version of yourself and that's what's so beautiful… Molly could see that Ken wouldn't be the person he is if he didn't have this passion."
Offscreen, the passion and the relationships within the cast and crew were just as integral to the film's success, with director James Mangold singing the praises of his superstar ensemble cast.
"When you're making a movie with this many characters, there are physical and emotional realities. One is, I'm stretched very thin and there are many scenes where all these guys are working and everyone here has fronted a show or movie themselves so they're all used to a certain amount of attention, and it takes a really great bunch of people, a generosity of spirit, to be patient. They were really remarkable," says Mangold.
A lot of that, Bale attributes to his co-star Damon, who he describes as "cooperative" and "one of the most decent men I've ever come across".
"He's absolutely in the school of, 'You cooperate with each other, you don't compete with each other.' The way he views everything… he has this bigger perspective… I just loved working with the man, he's fantastic."
Between the 1960s setting, the stories and characters, and an aesthetic that puts a summery, Super 8 kind of glow on everything, there's a nostalgic feel to this film that's inescapable. Mangold has heard it called "old-fashioned", and it's a label he embraces.
"I think I know what that means. I think people miss movies that weren't shot entirely in a room with green [screens]. I think people miss when Hollywood made movies that were large, but not necessarily for 12-year-olds. And so I don't think it means it's stodgy or musty," he says.
He says the goal was always to find meaning, adding that in this world of CGI and special-effects blockbusters, "emotion has become embarrassing and everything's with air-quotes". "Everything's a tribute to another movie, and a movie is about another movie, which was about another movie, and I want to make movies about people and not movies about movies," he says.
"To me, that's what feeds all this stuff. I've made movies where you have green screen. It's hard. It's hardest for the actors because they don't feel the wind on their faces, they're looking at a tennis ball and they don't have the sun on them… they're denied all of it, and it's like acting inside a sandwich bag. [It's about] trying to find those subtleties that make life interesting and people feel human."
Who: James Mangold
What: Ford v Ferrari
When: In cinemas next Thursday
Turns out one of the other guys racing at the seminal Le Mans endurance race this story is based on, was none other than Kiwi legend Bruce McLaren. If - like me before working on this story - you've never heard of him, here's the gist:
McLaren became the youngest driver to win a Formula One race when he took the flag in the US Grand Prix in 1959 aged 22 years and 104 days.
He studied engineering at the University of Auckland and in 1964 started designing racing cars, going on to win the 1968 Belgian Grand Prix in one of his own designs.
Most relevant to Ford v Ferrari, McLaren was one of the three drivers involved in the epic moment in sporting history depicted at the end of the film.
Do we wish there was more McLaren in the movie? Sure. But the fact that he shared this moment of prestige with the film's hero, Ken Miles, and to get an insight into what went into making that historical moment, is still a very cool thing to have in the back of your mind.