The Program is a pretty run of the mill telling of the true story of Lance Armstrong, the most successful cyclist of all time who turned out to be one of the biggest cheats of all time.

Beginning in the mid 90's when Armstrong burst onto the scene as a promising cyclist on the Tour De France circuit, The Program takes us from these early days, through his battle with cancer right up until his final fall from grace.

At the early stages of his career Armstrong found that he wasn't quite up there with the best of them and started taking performance enhancing drugs in order to lift him to the next level. His desire to be the best the led him to take part in the "program" run by the Italian Doctor Michele Ferrari (Gullaume Canet). It's from there that Armstrong's life becomes one lie after the other as he tries to keep his cheating a secret from both the media and cyclists governing body.

Armstrong through bullying tactics manages to keep the secret of his success to himself and a few other team members who are also in the program, but his sudden success doesn't go unnoticed and Sunday Times journalist David Walsh (Chris O'Dowd), whose book The Program is based on, starts to become suspicious and risking his own reputation starts to question Armstrong's success.

Ben Foster is particularly good as Armstrong, managing to capture the arrogance of a man that would stoop to any level to be a winner.

If you're coming fresh into the story then The Program will be an interesting watch however if you've seen Alex Gilbney's vastly superior documentary "The Armstrong Lie" then there's a I've seen this all before feeling. The Program adds nothing new to the Lance Armstrong story and if you want to see the definitive version I would strongly recommend skipping this and watching The Armstrong Lie instead.




The Program (15)

1h 43m

Director: Stephen Frears

Starring: Ben Foster, Chris O'Dowd, Guilaume Canet, Jesse Plemons

UK Release: Friday 16th October 2015

www.theprogrammovie.com