Monday, October 18, 2010

A Little Movie Review, A Little Thinking.... Secretariat

I'm not the only one in this family that loves horse movies so when trailers began to appear of Secretariat my family could hardly wait for the release. I had even bought tickets for a preview the week before the actual release date of the movie but instead of making our date at the movie theater we had a date with the vet on account of Solidare's Colt's illness so we had to wait to see the flick on the official opening date.

Being a sap about dreaming in the first place, movies that follow that storyline are automatically ok in my book especially when they are about horses. I found tears in my eyes on more than one occasion as this story unfolded. For me the fact it was a woman fighting for this horse made it all the more personal for me.

I must admit I was a bit disappointed there wasn't more about the horse in this movie. It was more the story of the woman behind him than the actual horse himself. All the major events in the horse's life were covered but I really would like to have seem more about the horse, his little quirks, his personality.

I know that horse movies are routinely picked apart for not being accurate. Incorrect plumbing on the horses used to portray Ruffian is probably the biggest movie maker faux pax I've heard tell of but I know that we horse people want our horse films to be authentic but I am not one of those who studies every little detail to see if they get it right. Some things do, however, just jump out at me.

In this movie the foaling was disconcerting between the changes from bay to differing shades of chestnut and the view of a face marking that was not even close in my book. Any breeder knows that face markings are oversized in foals. Horses grow into them, not to mention, the adult Secretariat had more than just a star. He was graced with a strip and a snip.

Other than that I thought this movie did pretty well portraying life in a racing barn as well as life on the track. I've not spent a lot of time in the barns to be an expert but the movie sure fit what I've seen.

I thought the characters were well cast but I thought the script was a little flat. I felt the actors made the most of what they were given and without their commitment the movie could have fallen flat. That would have been a shame considering what a giant of a hero Secretariat was. His racing career was amazing.

During the movie as I watched this woman fight her way through for this horse, I couldn't help but wonder how many "great" horses never made it because they didn't have a dedicated person behind them believing in them, making things happen so the horse could prove its greatness. Secretariat sure had that opportunity as did Seabiscuit. Without those people behind these great horses no one would have ever known what they were capable of accomplishing.

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  1. I still haven't seen it, I am of 2 minds about it sometimes I would rather the story I know and remeber , that the "hollywood version".somtime soon I will decide

  2. I loved the movie, but it was definitely more about relationships than Secretariat. That said, I loved-loved-loved it! Lots of tears, but good ones.

  3. Haven't seen it, but thanks for the review!

  4. When hubby and I went to see it, people in the theater clapped at the end. I guess they enjoyed it! Yes, it was mostly about the people, but I'm reading William Nack's book, Secretariat, and that IS about the great horse!

  5. I've heard basically the same thing, but I appreciate your thoughts on the movie. It is a Disney movie and I suspect that is part of the flatness you experienced, even Diane Lane can't work a miracle with a Disney script. Maybe I will read the book to fill in the gaps.

  6. Hubby and I finally went to see the movie “Secretariat” about the 1973 Triple Crown winning racehorse. We thought it was very good and a moving story. I almost exploded into uncontrolled sobs of joy and excitement at the end. It was so heartwarming! Even hubby had tears in his eyes! I'll never forget how awesome Secretariat's Triple Crown win in the Belmont was and the elation I felt for him and his people during that historic moment in history, as I saw it all unfold on TV. The movie today brought all those feelings back, with even more intensity, knowing what I know now about Secretariat and realizing how difficult it is to win the Triple Crown. He was an amazing creature!