Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Program (Stephen Frears, 2015)

Director: Stephen Frears; UK/France, 2015
Reviewed by Kiomars Vejdani

Stephen Frears' film about Lance Armstrong is dealing with not so much his sporting life but more so his personality. While film acknowledges his sporting talent as a cyclist and his courageous comeback after cancer, he puts more emphasis on his character flaws. He is selfish, excessively ambitious, obsessed with winning Tour de France. He uses any means to achieve his goal including unethical and illegal ones such as collaboration with doctor of dubious character and unprofessional conduct, clandestine use of illegal drugs. His activities move him gradually further away from true spirit of sport. The unethical aspect of Armstrong's activities are presented through the character of David Walsh, a sport journalist who stands up to him and makes his activities publicly known. As a result Armstrong loses all his awards.

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