Driven is a 2001 sports/drama film, directed by Renny Harlin of Die Hard 2: Die Harder and Cliffhanger fame, and starring Sylvester Stallone, who also wrote and produced. Co-starring alongside Stallone are Kip Pardue, Burt Reynolds, Estella Warren and Til Schweiger.
Stallone originally intended for the movie to be a biography on the late Ayrton Senna. However, he was unable to procure enough information regarding Formula One and thus decided to make a dramatization based around the now-defunct Champ Car, known at the time as "Championship Auto Racing Teams" (CART).
The movie was met with extremely negative reception, earning a 14% on Rotten Tomatoes and seven nominations on the 2002 Razzie Awards. It also bombed at the box office, making only US$54 million out of a US$94 million budget. Both Jay Leno and Richard Roeper have deemed it to be the worst car movie ever made.
In a fictionalized 2002 CART season, rookie driver Jimmy Bly (Pardue) becomes the new rising star, having won 5 races. However, his position is being threatened by his arch-rival, Beau Brandenburg (Schewiger).
Carl Henry (Reynolds), who owns Bly‘s team, decides to take matters into his own hands by un-retiring Joe Tanto (Stallone) to become Bly‘s mentor.
Why it Sucks
- Poor acting.
- Ends up just being Rocky, but with racing cars. This is not as awesome as it sounds due to a terrible storyline with underdeveloped characters, subplots that go nowhere, and cliche dialogue to boot.
- Horrifyingly obvious CGI effects.
- Defies the laws of physics numerous times. For instance, a Champ Car, all of which were fueled by methanol, crashes into a lake. Its fuel leaks out and it somehow catches fire and causes an explosion. Methanol is extinguished by water and does not float in water.
- Too many crash scenes.
- Overall tasteless and inaccurate depiction of open-wheel racing.
- There are a few times where the camera focuses on beautiful women in a manner that comes across as being rather creepy.
- Stallone himself does deserve credit for trying to make himself a supporting player in his own movie, an idea that he would revisit fourteen years later with 2015's Creed.
- The crashes are unintentionally hilarious.
- Leonardo DiCaprio was originally considered for the role of Jimmy.
- The working title for this film was Champs.
- Sylvester Stallone has since disowned this film, along with Rocky V and Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot.