User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 62 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 58 out of 62
  2. Negative: 2 out of 62

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  1. Aug 15, 2011
    I have never been an F1 fanatic, or been interested in cars, I do however possess a great passion for documentaries. For this reason I can say, without a doubt, that this is the best documentary I have ever seen.
  2. Apr 29, 2013
    A documentary that creates a surprising amount of tension, even though most of the audience knows the outcome. Senna is able to give an intriguing insight into the real Ayrton Senna, a man obsessed with his sport. A great documentary for fans of Formula 1 or not.
  3. Oct 19, 2011
    A fast and furious film that I really enjoyed but was also moving in parts, I loved it and after watching I wanted to watch it again and again. In one word, a triumph!!!
  4. Aug 31, 2011
    A magnificent assemblage from, I'd expect, thousands upon thousands of hours of film, from driver's meetings to home movies of the child and the man at play, at work, and in death. Be assured: You need not like, nor even know anything about, auto racing to be gripped by this film.
  5. Aug 12, 2012
    OK, it was a good film with some amazing footage, but for me it lacked a narrative - too many elements weren't explained fully, and the viewpoint seemed a little skewed - I'm no F1 fan, but the portrayal of the relationship between Senna and Prost didn't seem completely believable. Given that they appeared to dislike each other so much, I was surprised to see Prost in Senna's final race team, then bearing his coffin, and then being a key part of his children's charity. Expand
  6. Oct 19, 2011
    Although it largely centers around Senna's conflict with Alain Prost and the controversies surrounding their duels, it still leaves you with the feeling that you have just witnessed some moments of a true genius. I wish he was still around...
  7. Aug 12, 2011
    A great movie to the best driver ever, with a awesome sense of reality, we can watch how Senna fight to be in the top, and finally when he die. The music is awesome and all the FIA material is very interesting, this movie is a must see to all the fans of the good cinema.
  8. May 15, 2013
    Senna is a solid movie and a great example of a documentary that succeeds only by using archive footage. The racing is exciting and I really got a sense of how Formula 1 racing can be addicting and dangerous.

    One interesting note, I can't say I really admire Ayrton Senna. The film portrays him positively but reading between the lines I can definitely see why things wound up for him the
    way they did. He was a good patriot and a kind giver but that cannot wash away the fact that he was addicted to winning and used dubious methods to achieve it. He took many risks reaching for #1 and frequently put himself and other drivers in great danger.

    It was because of these methods he was so often a champion and I cannot say the man was without drive. However, I would not want to be in a race alongside Ayrton Senna.
  9. Sep 1, 2011
    Racecar drivers only get documentaries if they die unexpectedly while in the racecar. Subscribing to this theory, I expect the Dale Earnhardt story any day now. However, the story of Brazilian driver Ayrton Senna has nothing to do with NASCAR, but the world wide racing circuit of Formula One in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Senna won the World Championship an astounding three times, put all of his faith in God (to the annoyance of some other drivers), and saw no purpose for being happy with 3rd, 4th, or 5th place. He said if you do not race to win, then why race at all?

    The documentary shows Sennaâ
  10. Apr 12, 2014
    Piecing together footage and interviews Senna follows the career of the legendary Brazilian Formula One driver Ayrton Senna from his arrival in Europe in 1978 to his tragic death in 1994 aged just thirty-four.
    Whether you are a formula one fan or not this insight into one of motor racings, indeed sports, most unique personalities Senna makes for a fascinating and moving watch throughout.
  11. Aug 20, 2011
    Not an F1 fan really but had always heard about the charisma of Senna, I was not disappointed! Beautifully shot and gave real insight into the agony and ecstasy of Senna and the space that has been left by his untimely passing.
  12. Nov 17, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This is probably the best film I have ever seen. I am a big fan of F1 and knew about Ayrton Senna 's story before I watched the film. It may just be a collection of clips, but the way that Kapadia has put them together is superb. The film grabbed me from the start and I was hooked from there. It is mainly about Senna and Prost's relationship on the track, but it also tells you about his early life and how he got to the top of F1.

    I was pleased that his death wasn't focused on too much, there were a few clips and that was pretty much it for that part of his story, it would have been too easy to focus on the events at Imola quite heavily as most people who don't know anything about F1 know thats how he died.

    A fantastic documentary film put together brilliantly. 10/10 for sure.
  13. Nov 19, 2011
    An amazing documentary, which you don't have to be a motoring sports' fan to enjoy. I'd give it a 9, but just to counterweight the 79 given by the so-called experts I'll give it 10. MUST WATCH.
  14. Jan 16, 2012
    My love of racing personified! I l wish there were more films with racing footage like this. This film puts you in the drivers seat in the art of racing. I will watch it by adding it to my library of great film that can be watched over and over.
  15. Jun 30, 2012
    I don't always watch documentaries, but when I do, They're good. And that's why Senna is my favorite film in this genre. I don't follow Formula 1, but this is still entertaining.
  16. Jul 16, 2012
    Brilliant 2010 documentary film following the racing career of three-time F1 World Champion Aryton Senna. Compiled from hours of footage of racing, family videos, interviews with the Brazilian with interviews from peers played over the top, Senna is a documentary featuring no narration or retrospective interviews and plays out more like a written film than documentary. The film tells the story of Senna's arrival in F1, his instant success on the road to his titles, his rivalry with Alain Prost and clashes with the FIA, culminating with the fateful San Marino GP in 1994.

    The film is perhaps unbalanced when it deals with the Prost Senna relationship and I share Prost's opinion that it doesn't explain how their relationship thawed before Senna's death. The fact that Prost was a pallbearer at Senna's funeral speaks volumes of this. That said, the real 'bad guy' of the story is then FISA president Jean-Marie Balestre.

    Senna comes across as highly spiritual, patriotic, committed and I'm sure racing fans of the Senna era enjoying seeing and listening to some interviews with the man just as much as the racing footage. A moving masterpiece in documentary making that will appeal to all.
  17. Jul 15, 2014
    This one was very well done. The footage from the actual F1 races was a great touch and made me almost feel like I was living through everything, even though he was before my time and I have never watched F1. The story was very good and I liked getting all these details on all the season's of his dominance, along with the rivalry he had with Prost at the time, which really made things all the more intense. Overall, this one is a thrilling and emotional ride that is such a good documentary that you do not have to even watch F1 to like it. Expand
  18. Jul 21, 2012
    As great a documentary as I have ever seen, Senna pushes every button. Ayrton Senna was a racer before my time, I have grown up with Schumacher as my driving hero but watching this documentary made me wish that I had been able to watch this great sportsman drive before his untimely death (I was 1 when he passed). The insight into his life is remarkable and allowed me to understand what it was to be a driver in his age. If you haven't seen it, I could not recommend it more highly, especially if you are an avid sports fan. Expand
  19. Nov 13, 2012
    Fantastic doco, It would have been 10/10 but for the fact not enough emphasis was placed on Senna's most memorable opening lap at Donnington at the European Grand Prix in 1993. It was an opening lap nobody has ever matched. It showed skill at an incredible level and deserved to be the focus of more attention. That said it was a great film. 8/10
  20. Dec 20, 2012
    This is a very well put together doco which uses mostly archive footage. Its only failing was to explore in more detail the sensational opening lap at Donnington in 93.
  21. Dec 15, 2013
    A very one-sided, biased take on a genius of a driver. It plays up the drama between the drivers at bit much at times when it could have focused more on Senna's struggles with the Williams mechanical team. Although it was interesting to see here where Senna came from, and his struggles through the ranks, the film was not able to capture him on an intimate level. He always remains as a distance, untouchable celebrity. Still, not bad for a film made out of decades old footage. The film did tend to drag on however, and certain parts, especially some of the stuff that had nothing to do with racing, could have easily been cut out (I skipped through some parts myself). I was left wondering how such a stunning driver could be defeated by such a seemingly trivial problem. As troubling as it is that the exact cause of the crash is not known, it is a reminder that he was human, but there is some comfort in know that he died doing not only what he love, but what he had to do. Expand
  22. Oct 30, 2014
    Perfect in every way. This is the greatest film about auto racing ever produced. The story of Ayrton Senna the man. My wife who could care less about anything motorsports was moven by this film. Not only was Ayrton the greatest F1 driver of all time, he was quite possible one of the greatest human beings to have ever graced this earth. This film does him justice.

Generally favorable reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Sep 21, 2011
    Senna himself gives it its heart. I just wish I'd gotten a better handle on who he was before the film's checkered flag falls.
  2. Reviewed by: Joe Williams
    Sep 2, 2011
    With such supercharged material under the hood, a magnetic man behind the wheel and a nimble director manning the pits, Senna is simply the greatest sports film I have ever seen.
  3. Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    Aug 25, 2011
    In some ways, Senna is as pure and clean as the man's sport: as actor/racer Paul Newman liked to say, the winners of auto races are determined, unlike movies, by objective criteria. And although it's a subjective judgment, it's hard to see how anyone wouldn't be absorbed by this fascinating film about a formidable driver and man.