We don’t usually cover mainstream movies here on the site, but when an indie film comes to town that’s about journalism and biking, we have to give it a shout.
The Program is a fictionalized portrait of an Irish reporter’s battle to uncover Lance Armstrong’s history of doping his way into yellow jerseys. It’s at the Living Room Theaters this week.
The movie is directed by Stephen Frears (High Fidelity, The Queen, etc.) and stars Ben Foster as Armstrong, Chris O’Dowd as journalist David Walsh and Jesse Plemons as Armstrong’s teammate, enabler and finally betrayer Floyd Landis.
Here’s the promotional description:
The world needs heroes and Lance Armstrong (Ben Foster) was the ultimate sporting hero. Following a gruelling battle with cancer, Lance returned to his cycling career in 1999 more determined than ever and with his sights set firmly on winning the Tour de France. With the help of the infamous Italian physician Michele Ferrari and team director Johan Bruyneel, he developed the most sophisticated doping program in the history of the sport. This program allowed Lance and his American teammates to dominate the world of cycling, winning the Tour an unprecedented seven times. However not everyone believed the fairytale. Sunday Times journalist, David Walsh (Chris O’Dowd), at first charmed by Lance’s charisma and talent, soon began to question whether the ‘world’s greatest athlete’ was ‘clean.’ Walsh sought to unveil the truth, his ensuing battle with Armstrong risked his own career, ostracised him from the cycling community and cost his paper, The Sunday Times, hundreds of thousands in legal costs. But the indefatigable Walsh eventually uncovered the truth when a select few prepared to talk came forward, exposing one of the greatest deceptions of our time.
Rotten Tomatoes says the reviews have been ho-hum. Still, we thought you might want to know.
— Michael Andersen, (503) 333-7824 – email@example.com
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