Beyond the Visible is a five-part mini-series highlighting the Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN. The episodes are available on the Alfa Romeo Youtube channel.
Before I became an automotive writer and content creator, I worked in film and video production. I did a fair share of broadcast news and such, but as many video producers can tell you, the career path sometimes means doing tons (and I mean tons) of hours of corporate videos. And what we have here from the Alfa F1 team is just that. It’s nothing more than a corporate video series; it’s just a corporate video series about a reallycool subject.
Alfa Romeo Beyond The Visible
Beyond the Visible shows the inner workings of the Alfa Romeo F1 Team ORLEN. It’s a five-part video series with each episode running between five to nine minutes long, so it’s bite-sized and easy to consume. At its most basic, Beyond the Visible is a marketing video that sets up the product (a racing team) and what it takes to run it. It’s similar to the videos I made for Boeing or Microsoft back in the day. And like those companies, Beyond the Visible has that big-budget, high-production value look and feel.
It’s as slick as anything else I’ve seen shot about cars. Think Top Gear at its most flashy and artistic, and Beyond the Visible is like that from start to finish, with artsy close-ups and tracking shots. They didn’t go nuts (there are no dolly shots, for example), but everything looks like a high-quality hand-held camera or some type of Steadicam.
Beyond the Visible is lit to the Nth degree, color graded to perfection, and, although I’d bet a Peronithat it was shot on digital, it looks like film stock. That’s probably a nifty post-production trick, where you flip a switch and give your digital footage the color and richness of chemicals on celluloid, but it still looks very cool here. And the sound design is, likewise, Hollywood quality.
Beyond The Visible Lacks In Key Areas
The narrative structure of the story is lacking in Beyond the Visible. It’s comparable to Netflix’s Drive to Survive, a behind-the-scenes look into a storied and historical Formula 1 team, but Beyond the Visible doesn’t have quite the same setup.
Instead, we are dropped into the middle of this situation with Beyond the Visible. There’s no real explanation given of Alfa Romeo, for example. Beyond some vintage footage of people like Tazio Nuvolari, Alberto Ascari, and old Alfettas pounding around Monza, the viewer is left to their own devices concerning who Alfa Romeo is. Sure, if you’re a gearhead or follow racing, you probably already know, but it might be confusing if this is all new to you.
The same goes for the interview sound bites and voiceovers, which tend to be heavy with buzzwords and corporate racing jargon. Though well-produced regarding camera quality, Beyond the Visible doesn’t give you deep insight into the team or the drivers.
Leaves You Wanting More
We called shows like this “potato chips” in the business. It’s not a steak dinner loaded with all the trimmings. It’s a snack, and it’s supposed to be fun to eat. And Beyond the Visible is definitely that. It’s so glamorously shot and edited that after all 35 minutes have passed, you still don’t know anything more about running an F1 team. Like a chip with just the right amount of chemical flavoring, you want more, but it’s hard to feel satisfied in the end.
Longtime Automoblog writer Tony Borroz has worked on popular driving games as a content expert, in addition to working for aerospace companies, software giants, and as a movie stuntman. He lives in the northeast corner of the northwestern-most part of the Pacific Northwest.