Mixed or average reviews - based on 9 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 9
  2. Negative: 1 out of 9
  1. Reviewed by: Daphne Howland
    Jul 30, 2013
    Rising from Ashes is not just about a cycling team; it's a testament to what happens when human beings care for one another.
  2. Reviewed by: Frank Scheck
    Jul 31, 2013
    Narrated in unobtrusive fashion by Forest Whitaker and featuring a jaunty Afropop soundtrack, the film is crisp and economical, with the filmmaker carefully avoiding extraneous melodramatics. They are, after all, hardly necessary in a tale that already contains such inherently powerful drama.
  3. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Aug 1, 2013
    As a filmmaker, [Johnston] doesn't always trust his audience as much as he should, opting for overly insistent music and voice-over and withholding information in key areas. But he knew a good story when he saw one, and we can all be grateful for that.
  4. Reviewed by: Farran Smith Nehme
    Aug 2, 2013
    The sincerity and simplicity of the film, however, lift it somewhat above the ordinary run.
  5. Reviewed by: Joe Neumaier
    Aug 1, 2013
    Filmed over six years, “Ashes” is joyous and uplifting, full of spirit, memorable athletes (including Olympian Adrien Niyonshuti) and remarkable achievements, both big and small.
  6. Reviewed by: Andrew Schenker
    Jul 30, 2013
    Only a periodic focus on the troubled backstory of the team’s coach, American cyclist Jock Boyer, strikes the wrong note, distracting from a far more compelling tale.
  7. Reviewed by: Nick Schager
    Jul 31, 2013
    Too bad, then, that Team Rwanda’s inspiring rise to prominence and eventual course triumphs are so thinly sketched that the film leaves the audience wanting more, in the most frustrating way possible.
  8. Reviewed by: David DeWitt
    Aug 1, 2013
    Rising From Ashes has the phantom limbs of missed opportunities.
  9. Reviewed by: Andrew Lapin
    Jul 31, 2013
    A film’s quality should be measured not by its agenda’s transparency, but by its narrative heft. And the narrative is the problem with Rising From Ashes.

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