Academy Award® winner Alex Gibney (Best Documentary, Taxi to the Dark Side, 2008) documents the shocking, untold story of ex-cyclist Lance Armstrong’s improbable rise and scandalous fall from grace in The Armstrong Lie.
Love him or hate him, Lance Armstrong is one of the most intriguing characters in the history of professional sport. There is no denying he was a phenomenal athlete, doping or no doping, the guy worked tirelessly to achieve victory. He also became an incredible ambassador for cancer with Livestrong. It is just a pity that his achievement was awash with betrayal and vindictiveness and that he hurt so many bystanders along the way.
After years of allegations which were met with adamant denial from Armstrong, he finally admitted to doping in October 2012 to filmmakers who were making a documentary about his comeback. He later came clean to the world in an interview with Oprah Winfrey in January 2013.
The comeback documentary was shelved and instead the Armstong Lie was produced in its place.
Filled with interviews from ex-teammates, industry experts and Armstrong himself, The Armstrong Lie is compulsive watching. The documentary manages to show both sides of Armstrong. On one hand you see so clearly the liar, the manipulator and the bully but from time to time you get a glimpse of the athlete that sheds a completely different light on the athlete – when he is with his children or visiting cancer patients in hospital for example.
I couldn’t decide if I loathed him even more after watching or had a shred of sympathy for the guy, who was so clearly obsessed with winning, no matter what it cost him and others around him.
Whatever your opinion of Lance Armstrong, this BAFTA nominated documentary is well worth a watch.
The Armstrong Lie is available on DVD and Blu-ray from the 2nd June 2014.