The Flying Scotsman


Mixed or average reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 18
  2. Negative: 2 out of 18

Where To Watch

Buy On

Critic Reviews

  1. A sports bio movie that I really enjoyed about a sport and sports hero I barely knew existed: the World Hour Record competition for bicyclists and its gutsy, tormented and most unusual champion, Graeme Obree.
  2. 75
    It's an underdog story with teeth.
  3. Boasts exciting competitive track cycling footage.
  4. Obree's psychology is fascinating and, even though the competitive scenes mostly involve him racing against himself in a spectator-free indoor track, the movie manages to give its audience a suitable adrenaline rush here and there.
  5. Reviewed by: Ty Burr
    How many bicycling movies are there, let alone ones that know from frame geometry? "Breaking Away" is probably the champ, followed by "American Flyers," the hilariously awful Kevin Bacon bike-messenger movie "Quicksilver," and then we're already into "The Bicycle Thief " and "Pee-wee's Big Adventure." It's a small pack, and The Flying Scotsman rides close to the front by default.
  6. 60
    Miller is key to the film's success, with his earnest, sweet-faced looks and evident dark side. He plays Obree with just the right understated intensity, a believable competitor who fights back fiercely with his wits and a few tight-lipped words.
  7. Reviewed by: Alan Morrison
    A typically engaging performance from Johnny Lee Miller takes this slightly above the usual underdog movie cliche.
  8. Reviewed by: Eddie Cockrell
    Helmer Douglas Mackinnon does what he can to make the most of emotional bullet points and gloss over the lack of connective tissue.
  9. 50
    There's real triumph to Obree's story, and real adversity, too, but the film contents itself with the pretend versions of both.
  10. Brian Cox does sturdy work as the minister who helps Obree combat depression, and first-time director Douglas Mackinnon gets a big assist from Obree himself, who doubled for Miller in some shots and filmed others with a camera strapped to his handlebars.
  11. It's a shame it's not a better movie, but its small virtues include an uncompromising performance by English actor Jonny Lee Miller.
  12. While the world of competitive cycling can be extremely exciting, not every one of its events is captivating. A well-intentioned biopic about Scottish cycling maverick Graeme Obree, The Flying Scotsman is hampered by the fact that its hero earned his greatest renown for riding around and around on a velodrome … alone … for an hour.
  13. A conventional underdog sports movie that should have been much more gripping.
  14. The filmmaking is unremarkable, but the obsessiveness of the lead character is infectious enough to make this drama passable entertainment.
  15. Graeme Obree was a champion bicycler who, by all accounts, rarely took the easy way out. Too bad this movie version of his life doesn't follow suit.
  16. 40
    Scotsman not only lacks vision, a true sense of how to mesh Obree's sporting triumphs and personal setbacks, but it also lacks passion. What it needs, as strange and tacky as it may sound, is a bit more madness.
  17. New York Daily News
    Reviewed by: Jack Mathews
    For a much better film about a similar story, rent "The World's Fastest Indian," with Anthony Hopkins on a motorcycle.
  18. 30
    It has a terminal case of the cutes crossed with the labored earnestness of a disease-of-the-week melodrama.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 11 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 3
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 3
  3. Negative: 0 out of 3
  1. AllanF.
    Dec 11, 2007
    Amazing story and a fantastic performance from Johnny Lee Miller go together to make a wonderfully honest and uplifting film.
  2. JamesC.
    Nov 23, 2007
    I thought the was a wonderful movie, but then again I am homosexual ! James Chidlow, Hoole (Chester).
  3. Alan
    May 5, 2007
    If you like biking and underdog films, you'll love this film.