The World's Fastest Indian

ANTHONY Hopkins gets to be all wistfully avuncular, something at which he is peerless, in the based-on-a-true-story The World s Fastest Indian. The film is very much a labour of love for the director Roger Donaldson. These days he is a big Hollywood playe

ANTHONY Hopkins gets to be all wistfully avuncular, something at which he is peerless, in the based-on-a-true-story The World's Fastest Indian.

The film is very much a labour of love for the director Roger Donaldson. These days he is a big Hollywood player with films such as The Bounty, Species and Dante's Peak to his name but more than 30 year's ago in his native New Zealand he made a TV documentary about the record-breaking Kiwi motorcyclist Burt Munro. Now he has give that story the Hollywood treatment.

Munro was a mechanic who in the 1960s, when he was himself in his sixties, took a much-modified 40-year-old motorbike (the Indian of the title) to the Bonneville Salt Flats in America and, against all the odds, set a new land-speed record.

The film, with Hopkins as Munro, is roughly in three parts. First we get to meet Munro in his native land, then there is his journey to the States, and finally we have the sports film element as he goes for the records. It's all rather gentle and feels slightly overstretched but Hopkins genial performance and the director's affection for his subject shine through to make The World's Fastest Indian a pleasantly entertaining experience.


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