The true story of a man who never gave up on his dreams of doing something big -- and doing it very, very fast -- provides the basis for this engaging comedy drama. Burt Munro (Anthony Hopkins) was born in 1899 in Invercargill, New Zealand.… More The true story of a man who never gave up on his dreams of doing something big -- and doing it very, very fast -- provides the basis for this engaging comedy drama. Burt Munro (Anthony Hopkins) was born in 1899 in Invercargill, New Zealand. From childhood, Munro had a passion for machines that moved fast, and when he was 21 he bought his first motorcycle, an Indian model with a 600 cc engine. Motorcycles became an obsession that stayed with Munro for the rest of his life, as he constantly tinkered with his beloved Indian machine, modifying the engine and frame, determined to see just how fast he could make it run. In 1967, Munro decided it was high time he proved to himself and the world just what he and his machine could do, and he booked passage for the United States, with the goal of breaking the world's land speed record at Utah's Bonneville Salt Flats. As Munro made his way across America to Utah, he discovered not everyone took his dream seriously, but some did, and he made a handful of friends along the way, including Ada (Diane Ladd), a widow who fell for Munro's rough charm, and Fernando (Paul Rodriguez), a car dealer who offered to help him. However, when he finally arrived at Bonneville, Munro was told his machine was unsafe to participate in the time trials, and -- far worse -- he was too old to ride. It took some intervention from a ranking American driver, Jim Moffett (Chris Lawford), before Munro was given his chance to ride the famous Salt Flats. The World's Fastest Indian was written and directed by Roger Donaldson, who early in his career made a documentary about the real Burt Munro, Offerings to the Gods of Speed. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
Consensus: Overcomes its formulaic storyline thanks to Anthony Hopkins' warm and endearing portrayal of an age-defying thrill seeker.