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on 26 July 2014
Excellent documentary. What this really highlights is the damage done by the whole decades long doping scandal that rocked cycling. The film looks at how Pantani started as a youngster with a love of cycling and a gift for climbing mountains on the bike. It goes on to look at how somewhere along the way to winning a tour and Giro title in the same year he was charged with doping offences and from there spiralled into depression and drug use.

Its a great and well filmed documentary with lots of information I wasn't aware of. It takes a look at that era without focusing on Lance Armstrong (as so many others have).

Its very poignant as it uses members of his close friends and families - in particular his mother talks about how she always encouraged his love of cycling as she saw it as something healthy and social.....but she realised after that Marco was being pushed from a healthy love of sport and competition towards the sole quest of winning...and this unfortunately had to involve drugs in that era...

Well worth checking out and as good as the lance armstrong documentary (which was also excellent!)
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on 20 May 2018
Pantani was a mentally fragile man unsuitable for fame, but with an enormous talent for riding mountain stages that fame was unavoidable. He was a victim of his time, post Festina and pre Armstrong (to a point) so that the span of his entire career was the time of cycling greatest scandals. His talent and courage would have taken him to the very top of his sport, even without doping, but his time was rife with team led systematic doping culture programmes. The film shows his life with a degree of sympathy, and is well served by the excellent archive footage and 'talking heads' . Unlike Armstrong, Pantani is a likeable character, undone by the era he competed in and a hint of conspiracy aimed at slowing his meteoric rise. An excellent documentary.
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on 18 August 2014
This is a thoroughly solid, professional documentary and made with passion and expertise. Clearly well researched, it doesn't over sensationalise a tragic story. I particularly enjoyed the early archive and all the key moments were there from Pantanis career. Good contributions from many of the usual suspects, although I found it a bit odd that Matt Rendall was interviewed for a film based on his own book. I think a slightly more rigorous approach to the doping aspect of his career would have been appropriate, as well as a wider look at the doping culture that existed while he was racing. Although his desperately sad death is covered, it feels almost as a coda to the main film, as thought the filmmakers didn't quite have the confidence to give it more prominence and depth. Of course, new speculation that Pantani's death was not accidental is ironic indeed. I can certainly reccomend this documentary to all cyclists and to a wider audience who should be interested in a story of a brilliant, but ultimately fatally flawed talent.
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on 12 April 2015
Why is it our heroes always, or almost always let us down? I saw firsthand Marco win the 1998 Tour De France, The Festina Scandal Tour, by virtually destroying his opponents on two mountain stages and hanging on in the final TT to complete the Giro/Tour double.
This documentary doesn't raise him to sainthood nor does it totally destroy him, the man I saw flying up the mountains in 1998 was not the man who died alone in an hotel bedroom drugged up to the eyeballs with cocaine, a sad end to a complex man and a demon on bike in the mountains!
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on 4 July 2014
Celebration of the life and sad demise of one of the greatest cyclists of recent times. Sad tale of a young man forced by his team and peers do things he was unhappy about in order to compete on a level playing field at the top end of a sport that then ostracised him for daring to do his best. A sad indictment of the politics and corruption that ran the "sport" at the time. Il Pirata will always be a hero to me. Hang your heads in shame Lance Armstrong and all those others who turned your backs and left him to crash and burn and die a lonely and villified young man.
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on 10 July 2017
engrossing and heartbreaking documentary, it will bring a tear to your eye, you don't have to be a cycling fan to enjoy this movie, like the movie "Senna" this is a human story, with a tragic twist. Recommended.
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on 16 August 2014
When they say truth is stranger than fiction, this could be applied to Pantani. Although there is still the feeling that all of the truth is not quite out there.

This is another fall from grace cyclist, mired in doping and controversy. Pantani was a character - cycling needs more characters.

Compelling watching.
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on 5 April 2018
Very tragic .
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on 28 March 2018
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on 19 August 2015
Kept us interested and engaged all the way through, despite having no previous interest in cycling or knowledge of it (besides knowing they were all operating on banned substances).
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