The Armstrong Lie

The Armstrong Lie Image
Metascore
67

Generally favorable reviews - based on 37 Critics What's this?

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7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 7 Ratings

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  • Summary: In 2009 Alex Gibney was hired to make a film about Lance Armstrong's comeback to cycling. The project was shelved when the doping scandal erupted, and re-opened after Armstrong's confession. [Sony Pictures Classics]

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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 37
  2. Negative: 0 out of 37
  1. Reviewed by: Chuck Wilson
    Nov 5, 2013
    90
    To use a phrase from the film, The Armstrong Lie is a "myth-buster." It's wholly necessary, brilliantly executed, and a complete bummer.
  2. Reviewed by: Chris Nashawaty
    Nov 6, 2013
    83
    It's a fascinating film that points the finger at a charismatic master of deception — as well as our willingness to buy his deceit.
  3. Reviewed by: Kenneth Turan
    Nov 7, 2013
    80
    The whole truth about the complicated, charismatic man may never come out, but The Armstrong Lie is closer than we ever thought we'd get.
  4. Reviewed by: Ella Taylor
    Nov 8, 2013
    70
    If Gibney was looking for contrition, though, he didn't find it. Armstrong is candid about his doping and his legendary belligerence with the press. But he's confessing, not apologizing. And that "maybe not," mumbled to Oprah, is about as equivocal as he gets — on or off camera.
  5. Reviewed by: Jeff Baker
    Dec 12, 2013
    67
    All of Gibney's movies are worth watching. The best ones – "We Steal Secrets" (about WikiLeaks), "Client 9" (about Spitzer) and "Taxi to the Dark Side" (about Afghanistan) – speak truth to power in daring, unexpected ways. The Armstrong Lie feels like wheel-spinning, outraged that Armstrong lied not only to millions of people but to Gibney and then not pushing the evidence to the finish line.
  6. Reviewed by: Sara Stewart
    Nov 7, 2013
    63
    Overall, Gibney does a fine job documenting the timeless nature of Armstrong’s fall from grace. It’s undeniably satisfying to see the man himself lay it out: “It’s very hard to control the truth forever,” he says, awkwardly. “This has been my downfall.”
  7. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Nov 7, 2013
    40
    There’s so much more to this story — as any number of articles about the people he wronged attest — but this time, Gibney never really gets in gear.

See all 37 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 2 out of 4
  2. Negative: 0 out of 4
  1. Jul 22, 2014
    9
    A riveting film from documentary film maker Alex Gibney about 7 times Tour De France winner Lance Armstrong. What started out as a celebrationA riveting film from documentary film maker Alex Gibney about 7 times Tour De France winner Lance Armstrong. What started out as a celebration of the man and his achievements became something else entirely when mid production it was revealed that Armstrong had used body enhancing drugs to assist him to those triumphs. The man himself comes over as a paradox, charismatic on one hand, but also Machiavellian and self serving. His life has certainly been eventful, what with his bout with cancer, and one does get a sense that he feels a deep sorrow about the lie that not only crushed him, but also affected the lives of many others. The film pertinently points out that even though his 7 championships were won with the help of drugs, this was in an era when the whole sport was tarnished in this way. It's also interesting to be privy to other smaller corruptions that were taking place on the track, with intense rivalries not just between other teams and individuals, but also between team mates! This is what documentary film making should be all about. It is both Informative and compelling. Expand
  2. Nov 17, 2013
    8
    The Armstrong Lie is an allegorical tale of America. Lance Armstrong exhibits phenomenal athletic greatness and Machiavellian villainy. WithThe Armstrong Lie is an allegorical tale of America. Lance Armstrong exhibits phenomenal athletic greatness and Machiavellian villainy. With the complicity of the media, Armstrong shrewdly sells the beautiful lie because that's what people want to believe meanwhile abusing power crushing the weak in order to perpetuate fairy tale. Gibney is a consummate story teller and provides insight into the complex relationships of big money corporate sports in an age of moral relativism. Expand
  3. Sep 23, 2015
    6
    Cycling and dope and a dude lying through his teeth... on film.

    This had me so disliking the person that the mere watching of it further
    Cycling and dope and a dude lying through his teeth... on film.

    This had me so disliking the person that the mere watching of it further was becoming increasingly difficult. A fabulously made documentary that shows hypocrisy of the highest order.
    Expand
  4. Jan 2, 2015
    5
    Just a movie to convince us that we should forgive Armstrong even though he used performance enhancement drugs and lied about it over and overJust a movie to convince us that we should forgive Armstrong even though he used performance enhancement drugs and lied about it over and over and over. If you want to get a glimpse of arrogance, watch Armstrong in this documentary. Expand

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