The Program

Critics Consensus

Ben Foster's impressive efforts to channel Lance Armstrong are often enough to power The Program past director Stephen Frears' frustrating unwillingness to delve deeper into its real-life story.

62%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 108

43%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 3,059

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The Program Videos

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Movie Info

Journalist David Walsh (Chris O'Dowd) of The Sunday Times investigates famed cyclist Lance Armstrong (Ben Foster) for doping.

Cast & Crew

Ben Foster
Lance Armstrong
Chris O'Dowd
David Walsh
Guillaume Canet
Medecin Michele Ferrari
Jesse Plemons
Floyd Landis
Lee Pace
Bill Stapleton
Denis Ménochet
Johan Bruyneel
Elaine Cassidy
Betsy Andreu
Edward Hogg
Frankie Andreu
John Hodge
Screenwriter
Tim Bevan
Producer
Amelia Granger
Executive Producer
Liza Chasin
Executive Producer
Olivier Courson
Executive Producer
Ron Halpern
Executive Producer
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News & Interviews for The Program

Critic Reviews for The Program

All Critics (108) | Top Critics (22) | Fresh (67) | Rotten (41)

  • The flashily photographed enterprise too often becomes a blur of sound bites and slick aesthetics akin to a Nike commercial.

    March 18, 2016 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • For a story about incredibly focused determination - and if nothing else, Lance Armstrong had that - the film remains strangely uninvolved.

    March 18, 2016 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • "The Program" fails to add anything new, or penetrate the soul of so crafty a cheater.

    March 18, 2016 | Full Review…
  • It never goes deep on what it was that produced the awfulness that is Lance Armstrong.

    March 18, 2016 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
  • "The Program," much to its detriment, concentrates almost exclusively on the history of the doping effort . There is no mention of his childhood or adolescence or any attempt to analyze his character.

    March 17, 2016 | Full Review…
  • Foster nails Armstrong, right down to his final, clenched-jaw TV confession to Oprah Winfrey but The Program's glancing narrative feels less secure.

    March 17, 2016 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Program

  • Apr 23, 2016
    I thought this was a riveting tale of the whole Lance Armstrong doping saga, I am not sure how accurate it was in terms of factual information but it was exceedingly enjoyable.
    Ian W Super Reviewer
  • Oct 14, 2015
    This is one of those biopics that tells a story that we all know and doesn't manage the necessary to raise it above its limitations; instead, it suffers from a one-dimensional protagonist that never becomes intriguing and ends so abruptly that it feels like Frears got tired of telling it.
    Carlos M Super Reviewer
  • Sep 14, 2015
    There is something to a Stephen Frears picture that is always appealing. I never expect much from them, but I typically end up with something pretty great. I've probably watched Philomena a handful of times since 2013 because I tend to show it to people who have never heard of it. The same could be said of The Queen or High Fidelity. These aren't major, milestone pieces, but they are always quenching in a way only Frears can seem to deliver. Maybe I should have went in with those same non-existent expectations to the English directors latest, but either way The Program would probably be something of a minor letdown. This isn't to say the film isn't good, in fact it has a lot of positive things going for it and I honestly wasn't ready to see it come to an end when it did, but the typical pop that comes with a Frears production just isn't at play here. Given Frears had painted a moving and somewhat revealing picture of Queen Elizabeth in his Oscar-nominated 2006 film I thought he might be up to something similar with his Lance Armstrong biopic, but alas there is no alternate version of Armstrong's life that the news reports haven't already divulged. Instead, Frears recounts the highs and lows of Armstrong's career with a compelling flow and solid performances, but nothing to give it that extra oomph to make it something truly special. read the whole review at www.reviewsfromabed.com
    Philip P Super Reviewer

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