One of the coolest parts of my job as OWL editor is going to see sneak previews so I can talk about them with you here on the blog. In case you haven’t noticed, I really like going to the movies. This week I got a chance to see Disney’s newest flick, Secretariat, and I’m here to share some thoughts.
The movie’s a true story (or “biopic”) about a horse named (surprise!) Secretariat. These days many people agree he’s the world’s all-time greatest racehorse, but he had very humble beginnings.
At the beginning of the movie, Secretariat’s eventual owner, Penny, is struggling just to keep her stable afloat. But then Secretariat is born and soon changes all that — and the sport of horse-racing in general — as he races toward the sport’s coveted triple crown.
Here are a few observations I had about the movie:
1) It’s family-friendly. Really, I had no idea what to expect from this movie walking in. Was it going to be mainly for a) kids, b) adults, or c) adults who really like horse-racing? After seeing it, I can say it was for all of the above. So take your cousins! Or your parents! Or your riding coaches! It’s got something for everyone.
2) It’s predictable, but still exciting. The tagline of the movie is “Based on the impossible true story,” so even if you’re not a big horse-racing buff you know right away you’re not watching the story of a horse who lost all that often. That said, my heart was pounding all the way through the depictions of Secretariat’s biggest races. I knew he was going to win, but I was cheering for him anyway. That’s impressive.
3) It’s inspiring. The message of this movie is simple but effective: believe in yourself and follow your dreams, no matter what. All of the people around Secretariat — his owners, trainers, handlers, and jockeys — face obstacles throughout the movie. But their belief in themselves, their horse, and each other carries them through.
Overall, I thought Secretariat was really good. It gives you a new respect for a sporting legend, and feels fresh and new even though the story is years old. I’m also particularly glad I got to see it in theatres — the huge sound of the horses’ hooves in stereo made me feel like I was right on the track.
Do you think you’ll see this movie? Skip this movie? Do something else instead? Let me know in the comments below.
Talk to you next week!