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3.5
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This is the shocking exposé of the Russian doping scandal at the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics that has resulted in Russia being banned from the upcoming 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

The documentary starts with American cyclist Bryan Fogel successfully seeing if he can avoid detection while pumping himself full of testosterone and human growth hormone (HGH) at the Tour de France, years after the Lance Armstrong doping revelations. Halfway through the film, by sheer happenstance, his Russian contact, whom it turns out was a key player in the Sochi scandal, flees to the U.S. and blows the whistle, describing how he says the Russian government boldly swapped the urine samples of every single Russian athlete in Sochi. It is mind blowing. As of late December 2017, the IOC had stripped Russian athletes of 13 Olympic medals from the Sochi games, with more likely to come.

The slow first half of the film could have benefitted from some much needed editing, but it is still a fascinating and infuriating real life geopolitical thriller, featuring a mysterious death, the KGB and the Witness Protection Program. You will never look at the Olympics the same way again. B

 

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